Job recommendations for a University student

Today I paid off my tuition and accommodation fees for this semester, and I now have less than $300 to my name. While I’m probably not going to starve to death, it will mean drastic cuts to my beer budget. This means I’m going to have to get a part time job. Unfortunately, all I can think of are jobs that involve the phrase “would you like fries with that?” Can anyone give some job ideas to a guy with more or less nought work experience?

Personally, I found security guard to be quite a good job for a college student. You get to sit at your post, doing your homework, and you get paid for it! The job doesn’t require any experience.

Doesn’t your University have a job center? I imagine that they can help you get on campus jobs like tutor, library assistant, chem lab watcher. These are great jobs in that they involve a lot of sitting and waiting for students to come by with work for you to do and you get to spend a lot of time studying. I know when I worked in the math tutoring lab about half the time I spent either doing my own math or talking to the other tutors, and I got paid for it.

Stock clerks at local stores would also be good. Although mopping can be just as bad as dish cleaning.

grave-yard shift at a gas station might work if you’re an insomniac like me. But, it kinda puts a hamper on going to class.

Librarian. You’ll spend a lot of your time sitting at a desk, studying, and waiting for people to need books checked out. Plus, free Internet access.

Plus, you get to meet all those cute young librarians…

How are your computer skills? Most universities employ students to help out at computer labs. They don’t usually care about previous experience, if you’re reasonably computer-savvy. Not as many young cuties as in the library though :slight_smile:

Tutoring is definately a good part time job as well, since you can usually set your own hours. Good luck.

I will also recommend that you try for an on-campus job. At my university, the pay was much better than off-campus jobs (at a time when the regular minimum wage was $5, University minimum wage was about $6.25.) Also, many of these jobs are open to students only–less competition.

Do you have any work-study money as part of your financial aid? If you do, you will be very desirable, because departments won’t have to use as much of their own budgets if they hire you. More jobs will be open to you.

(I just realized that the OP is not from the US, so the above may not apply. Then again, perhaps Australia has a similar program. Talk to the financial aid office.)

I worked at the library, too, but I didn’t get to sit on my butt much or study, so YMMV. (Someone’s got to put the books away, you know!)

I know this is sort of a “would you like fries with that” job, but look for delivery driver jobs. If you get tips you can make some good money: up to $100 a night (or afternoon) delivering pizzas. But there are other delivery jobs if you don’t want to deliver food. One of my friends took one of those bartending classes and worked as a bartender for a strip club. He made booku bucks. Then he took a massage class and is a licensed massuer. They make good money too.


You can easily make a couple hundred a night, it’s not too dificult, and you meet LOTS of girls (or guys if that’s your thing).

For about a year in grad school I worked PT at a funeral home. I strongly recommend it. The vast majority of what I did was vacuum the floor and arrange chairs. I would also help in the parking lot directing cars & stuff. I did also pick up stiffs from hospitals and old folks’ homes.

It may not be a great resume stuffer, but the people in the funeral business are really up-beat and fun to be around. You’ll need a couple of suits and a respectable haircut. I’d check it out. It’s a great experience, IMO, and it really helps put life into perspective.

Do you get along well with your professors? Keep your ears open, in case any of them are looking for an assistant. I worked for my favorite psychology professor for two years as his research assistant (I looked up journal articles, photocopied tons of stuff, and did other tasks related to his book-writing project) and earned $7/hour, which is about a buck-fifty more than minimum wage and about a dollar more than what campus jobs were paying.

You can get decent-paying jobs on campus, though. I got a job as a transcriber that also paid $7/hour. I sat at an old PC (running Windows 3.11 and the DOS version of WordPerfect) for about three hours a day and typed out tape-recorded interviews with people who survived tsunamis or ran businesses. Fascinating stuff (really), and it improved my typing.

If you do opt for your university’s employment office, go ASAP. All the good jobs get sucked up fast.

if youve got a car, pizza delivery for someone like domino’s is a great way to meet people and make a LOT of money, fast.

i used to work 4 hour shifts, leaving with 20$ in my hand (tips) and about 25$ worth of wages worked for.

librarian is good, friend of mine does it. does all his homework, reads books, doesnt really do much of anything since it’s a library (snore).

if you can handle it, a bartender is ideal. you meet so many people, and make so much money that it just boggles the mind.

(you also learn to make cool drinks that impress the ladies ;)).

When I was an undergrad I used to proctor exams for my department. Upside, $100 bucks to monitor 3-4, 2-hour exams a semester. Downside, you didn’t get paid until the end of the semester, and it’s not a lot of work. It was an easy way to earn some extra cash that didn’t require much of a commitment though.

My department also hired graders and tutors. It paid relatively well and has the advantage of looking a little better on a resume than slinging burgers does.

I had friends who did both the security and computer desk jobs mentioned earlier. All of them agreed that it was very little effort, though tedious.

For off campus stuff, video stores are almost always hiring. And you get free rentals.

I’d second the suggestion that you tutor.

What do you study, and do you go to a school that has tons of students? If you’ve done well in a course that’s both considered difficult and in high demand, you could make some pretty good money for private tutoring. After I graduated, a lot of my rent money came from tutoring people in organic chem.

I demanded a fee of $15/hour/person (I was willing to tutor 2 people at once for $25/hour and had negotiable group session rates) and had some people willing to pay that. After a few weeks, I got referrals, and by the end of the quarter I had about 3 or 4 tutoring appointments per day, approx. 4 days a week.

I stopped tutoring when I got a different full-time job. Now my organic chem is rusty, I’d feel pretty guilty demanding that kind of cash for the quality of work I could do now. Otherwise, I’d go back to organic chem tutoring in a second.

Did you do well in calc? Statistics? Physics? As far as I can tell, those subjects usually have a pretty high demand for tutors, too.

I happen to be one of those cute young librarians, :wink: and it is indeed a fantastic job. I’m at it right now, in fact. So yes, the free Internet access is lovely, I get paid to do my homework, study, read, chill, use the computer and check out books. It’s great. At least in the US, though, library jobs and a lot of other on-campus positions are only for work-study students. I have no idea how financial aid elsewhere even works, so it may be different where you are. But the library is a fabulous place to work. I’m in my sixth semester working here, have been here since my first semester at school, and I wouldn’t change it for anything. Especially since I just got my fancy new shiny personally engraved nametag. :slight_smile:

I’ll take Ethilrist and Phatlewt’s comments as compliments. Whee, I’m a cute librarian!

Oh, also, if your school has an art department and you’re comfortable naked or in swim trunks, check and see if they need models for drawing or painting classes. My school pays $10 bucks an hour for nude models, $5.50 for swimsuits, it’s usually three-hour classes once a week, you just pose and let people draw you. I’ve never done it because of my library work schedule, but my best friend has and it’s pretty easy money she says.


I meant to stick an “and” between the phrases, “my organic chem is rusty” and “I’d feel pretty guilty demanding…”

And to think–as soon as my car is working again, I’ll be trying for a part-time editing job.


I don’t know how it is now, but a problem I had when confronting the low-end job market in a town crawling with students seeking work was getting enough hours to pay me what I needed while giving me a schedule that would work with a class schedule that changed every 3-4 months. Restaurants that required a full-time crew of 30 people had 75 part-timers on the payroll.

What worked best for me was driving a taxicab. It seemed the perfect student job, although I never met another hack in mid-'70s Austin, Texas who was a student. The schedule was completely up to me and, while I wouldn’t recommend it as a career, at the time I was generaly a little more flush than my student compadres. I owned my cab, so I had other guys rolling when I wasn’t, and that added a bit to the income stream.

While the cab essentially put me through school, I did also work for the school as a chemistry lab assistant. That job had the insufficient hours problem, but that might not be a problem if you don’t need to pay your whole tab. Definitely met girls through that.

I also worked as a graveyard desk clerk at a downtown hotel. That job involved, as described above, being a warm body without much to do, so I could study (as well as one does at 4:00 AM). The only girls I met there were mostly interested in what the owner of this once nice, but turning the corner, hotel described as my “innovative” hourly rate.

If you could find something related to what you’re going to school for, like maybe an internship, that would probably be your best bet. You would basically be getting paid to get experience in your field. But these positions may be hard to come by, especially on a campus where everyone is looking for a job like that.

If you aren’t concerned with something to necessarily look good on a resume, a liquor store job is what I did in college. It won’t pay a lot, but it would probably pay as much as any other similar part time job. Plus you can get a discount on booze and would probably work with a lot of other people your age.

So many people I know have tried telemarketing. You could give it a go, but it must be awful - almost everyone I’ve talked to about it says they quit after about half a day.

But you know, if you can stand being that hated…

This is what I do. I get paid pretty well-nearly $10/hr. Since I’m employed by the university (and I’m a full-time student), Social Security is not taken out of my paycheck. We sign up for a new schedule each semester, and the hours during the day are set with when classes are held–so if I have a break from 2:25-3:30, I could work then. And although we’re not supposed to do work while we’re on duty, it is possible if it’s slow (especially at night). Plus, that’s how I get most of my SDMB time in.