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You Can Make Leaving College With No Student Debt a Reality With the Right Side Hustle Approach

The United States is a land of endless opportunity, but the reality of that fact is that most well-paying and worthwhile career endeavors require a college degree. Unlike many nations in the Western world, higher education in America comes with a high price. According to the Center for American Progress, about 43 million college graduates are saddled with student debt.

But there are numerous ways in which you can be wise when it comes to finances during your college career. Finding the right kind of side hustle that pays well, in addition to minimizing as many hidden fees and extra expenses as possible, are two of the best practices.

What Side Hustles Can Help Me Pay for College?

The phrase ‘side hustle’ has become incredibly popular in the last decade thanks in part to the rise of digital technology and easier accessibility to the internet. Many students and working adults can find the opportunities in this phrase to be rewarding enough to call them a true career.

For example, even as a college student you can get a subcontracting business going with ease; finding equipment like industrial tents for construction sites, or getting an LLC, is as simple as a few clicks. College students can also run digital agencies from the comfort of their dorm room.

But not all side hustles are created equal, and it takes trial and error to find the most convenient and lucrative.

Let’s explore some of the most rewarding solo business ventures and side hustles that can cover expenses as steep as college tuition.

Freelance Writing

Writing for the web certainly is not for everyone; you need at the minimum a fairly reasonable vocabulary skill set, competent mastery of grammar, as well as an understanding of how SEO (search engine optimization) works to maintain the interest of online readers. But the general education skills you learn in college should be enough to set you up for success.

You can earn as much or as little doing freelance writing for the web as you want. Most agencies or clients will pay by the word, and the more you can write, the more money you can make. Paying for a standard college course could be possible in as little as 3 weeks of writing at 40-50 hours per week; it just takes dedication and focus. This side hustle will also sharpen your writing skills in beneficial ways for when you enter the career world.


Like freelance writing, ridesharing is a potentially lucrative side hustle that has no set schedule you need to meet, which is perfect for college students. Popular apps like Uber and Lyft allow you to submit a brief application that includes a criminal background check, a survey of your vehicle to check for up-to-date standards, and vehicle insurance confirmation.

If you meet these qualifications, you can begin picking up passengers and dropping them off at their required destination for an agreed-upon fee that is pre-authorized before the passenger is picked up. Like writing, this side hustle is very much what you make of it; the more rides you complete in a day, the more money you will make.

Ridesharing has many benefits related to work/life management, the ability to pick and choose when you want to work, as well as a wider appreciation of social skills since you can meet people from a wide variety of cultures.


Tutoring has come a long way from what it once was. With the rise of digital technology, college students and recent graduates can now tutor students from all over the world thanks to popular online tutoring platforms. Much like the other side hustles discussed, online tutoring frequently features rates as high as $20 per hour USD, with the ability to work as much or as little as you want on your schedule.

You can join platforms that connect you to students all over the country and even as far and wide as China and Europe. This side hustle complements being a full-time student nicely and is a perfect gig to help pay for college and acquire a skillset if you choose to go into teaching.


There are a wide range of sales jobs available that can be lucrative careers and not just side hustles, but to really optimize your income, consider one that pays a residual income which is like a gift that keeps on giving. With residuals, you get paid out every month just as long as that customer remains a customer. The payment processing industry is one that offers this.

How to Maximize Your Side Hustle Earning Potential

Live as frugally as you can while maintaining comfort and dedicate all miscellaneous funds to paying for your classes. Side hustles can be a lucrative venture if you choose the right one and maximize its true earning potential. Many graduates spend years paying off student debt but investing your time in a viable and well-paying side hustle can effectively keep you out of this statistic.


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