By Melissa Burns
If you are a student looking for opportunities to support himself, there are better ways to do it than doing odd jobs or paid surveys on the Internet – like a small business of your own. You are wrong if you think that you don’t have enough time for it. If most students find time for partying, hobbies and relationships and still manage to excel at studies, why can’t you find time for something that is no less fascinating while being actually useful? With a little bit of creativity, diligence and time-management you are more than capable of pulling it off.
Buying and selling items via the Internet is exciting, interesting and doesn’t require much time or investment. If you want to simply try your hand at it, you won’t even need a website of your own, as you can easily use services like eBay or Etsy to cover your needs. But even if your ambitions are a little bigger, all you need is a little amount of money for starting stock, a website with some kind of shop script, a small business accounting software and some time to spare. It may seem frightening at the beginning, but all things are difficult before they are easy.
2. Tutoring Service
Have other students ever asked you to help them with a subject that always seemed easy enough to you? If yes, why not do it for a little monetary reimbursement? We don’t talk writing other people’s papers here, what we mean is genuine tutoring, giving students who struggle with a particular discipline personal lessons, especially in preparation to important exams or tests they absolutely have to pass. And after some time you may cooperate with other students to cover more subjects and grow into a full-fledged business.
3. Moving Service
All you need to start a small moving service is a truck, a valid license, some friends who are not averse to heavy lifting and some buzz to get your newly baked business off the ground. To that end you may advertise your services on Craigslist (which can be used to find affordable moving supplies as well), bulletin boards, Foursquare, Yelp and social networks like Facebook.
If you happen to like photography, why not channel your hobby into a more productive outlet? What about this idea, for example: go to an exotic car dealer, make photos of the cars and present them to him to showcase your skills. If you know your business, you are likely to be hired to make more photos for marketing purposes – and even if you aren’t hired, you’ve spent time doing what you like and added something to your portfolio. The same goes for any hobby, really – if there is any way to capitalize on it, use it.
5. Freelance Writing
When you are at college, you have to develop some writing skills, even if you are not going to need them much in your future life. So by doing some writing on the side you will kill two birds with one stone: on the one hand, get some additional writing experience, on the other hand – get paid while doing so. However, you should be ready that entering this business will take some time and fees aren’t going to be spectacular – at least, in the beginning.
Having a business of your own, even if you are not going to keep it after college, is always useful – it teaches you how to be creative, active and responsible. And who knows, perhaps it will grow into something bigger. Graduating from college without having to look for a job and depending on the government – what can be better?
Melissa is a student of journalism. She is passionate about digital technologies and tries to implement them in the sphere of education. –