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The Best Jobs for College Students

Learn the best college jobs for gaining work experience and building skills.

For many, college is a time of self-expression and discovery. Not only about yourself and who you are as an individual, but where you would like your career to go. From summer jobs for college students to online jobs for college students, any experience you gain can be helpful for your career journey. With four years to grow and learn, the options are endless.

What are the best college jobs?

Depending on what your schedule is like, where you live, and what you’re studying, there will always be jobs that might be more helpful in the long run. But when you’re still trying to find your way around college during your first years, consider some starter jobs that you can apply to and still keep a flexible schedule.

Best jobs for college students:

  1. Resident Assistant/Community Assistant
  2. Nanny
  3. Peer Tutor
  4. Dog Walker
  5. Barista
  6. Research Assistant
  7. University Bookstore Employee

What do college jobs pay?

All college jobs pay different amounts depending on which state you live in and what role you’re working.

Examples of the average salary by major, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

How to find a college job

Search the #1 site for college student jobs in your area or consult your university’s job opening page.

What should I look for in a college job?

If you have an already busy schedule, consider a flexible job that will help you save up some extra cash. A great position to apply to is a research assistant. It will give you pretty flexible hours and you’ll be working directly with someone from your own major’s department.

What skills will I get from a college job?

The skills you gain will depend on what kind of job you go for, but any college job will teach you how to manage time and organize your schedule in a way that works best for you. Be it an entry-level or remote job, they all have different skills to offer.

How to balance a job in college

Getting your degree and working long hours is no joke. Here are some tips to help you avoid some common mistakes.

Four steps to balancing school and work:

  1. Organize your calendar: Utilize an online calendar you can track on your phone or a physical planner so you can keep track of when you’re supposed to be at work, class, or taking your mandated rest time.
  2. When you rest, really rest: Long nights in the library cramming or closing shifts can really wear you down–make sure to eat, drink, and sleep enough.
  3. Build an emotional support system: Find a healthy group of friends and lean on them when times are tough, and listen when they’re going through it as well.
  4. Take advantage of your college’s resources: All universities have perks that come with the price of admission. Feeling confused about a test? Go to tutoring. Wanting to vent about something? Check out your school’s counseling services.

How to translate college job experience on resume after graduation

By the time that you graduate from college, you’re bound to have had some work experience. If you’re wondering about how to get and apply to jobs now, it’s important to look back on your experiences and translate those to apply to the job that you want. For example, if you spend a lot of time as a research assistant, list that experience as helping you procure insider knowledge of your field–maybe even the tips you picked up from your boss. Chances are you cultivated skills like organization, accountability, teamwork, leadership, or project management.

What are good jobs for college students?

Good jobs for college students allow the student to both focus on their studies, while cultivating a sense of responsibility and worth in the working world. Part-time jobs are good for younger students focused on dedicating most of their time to getting acclimated to school. While jobs that are more specialized are great for upperclassmen looking for more tangible experience for their resumes. 

What careers are there in college?

Depending on your school, there are a wide variety of careers available to you. Talk with your professors and check on the majors that your school has to offer to assess your future career options.

Can you get a job in college?

Yes! In fact, getting a job in college teaches great time management and communication skills. Check out our list of 500 employers hiring right now on Handshake.

What are the best jobs to go to college for?

Ideally, the best job to go to college for is a job that you’re passionate about. Whether that’s art, science, politics, or healthcare–the best job is the one that you’re personally interested in. Though, if you’re considering some of the fastest growing careers, the Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the following options as some of the most lucrative.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels