Earn Good Money While in Grad School

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You’ve enrolled in graduate school to become more knowledgeable in your field and experience higher education. Being in grad school, however, can take up much of your time and money, leaving you unsure if you’ll be able to make ends meet while you’re studying. This guide shows you how to make money in grad school.

Fortunately, there are many financial aid options you can choose from that can help you pay for grad school tuition, like federal student loans, private student loans, a grant, and graduate scholarships. Taking care of immediate costs like living expenses, however, means you’ll need some form of income to help pay the bills. The last thing you want is to build up extra debt, ruin your credit score, or miss loan payments all before you enter the real world.

How to Make Money in Grad School

If you’re unsure of what you can do to get by as graduate student, take a look at our list below.

Before You Get Started

You need to check your graduate school contract to see if there are any jobs you’re not allowed to take while studying to earn your graduate degree. Depending on the grad school program you’re enrolled in, there may be certain jobs you are required to avoid. Consult your grad school contract to see what it says about external jobs.

10 Best Ways to Make Money in Grad School

1. Tutoring

Tutoring is a great way to earn extra money in grad school without having to commit to teaching assisting, especially if your contract prohibits you from taking a teaching position. High school and undergraduate students are often looking for tutors to help them with difficult classes, and it’s even better for you when those classes relate to your graduate program. You can make a good amount of money each week by tutoring and setting your own hours for how much you want to tutor while gaining valuable work experience.

Nowadays, you don’t have to tutor in person. You can tutor online through Zoom, Skype, or Microsoft Teams, so you don’t have to worry about incurring expenses to meet up with students who need tutoring.

2. Teaching or Research Assistant

How to Make Money in Grad School

If you’re going to be on campus for class, you can make the most of your time there, by becoming a teaching assistant or research assistant. Many professors will often pay for an assistantship to help them with teaching or research, so it’s a good idea to check with any professors or researchers in your field of study to see if they are hiring an assistant.

3. Food Delivery Driver

Being a food delivery driver is an easy way to earn extra cash. You can set your own hours each week, working as little or as much as you need. Just make sure that you aren’t spending in gas more than you’re making in tips.

How to Make Money in Grad School

4. Freelancing

There are many freelance opportunities available in a variety of fields. Becoming a freelancer in your field of study can add to your portfolio while also growing your pocketbook. If you’re new to freelancing, the pay may start small, but you can quickly increase your rate as your portfolio grows.

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5. Pet Sitting

Pet sitting is a great way to make money while also helping out your community. Many people often prefer to keep their pets in the comfort of their own homes while they are away as opposed to boarding them in loud facilities with other animals. As a pet sitter, you will have to walk a dog, change a cat’s litter box, and make sure the animals have plenty of food and water. If you like animals, this is a great way to earn some extra money.

6. Sell Printables or Digital Downloads

This is a great way to make extra money in grad school, especially if you are going to graduate school for graphic design. Printables and digital downloads are great ways to earn extra cash without even leaving your house. You can sell the printables on various retail websites like Etsy. If you don’t want to deal with Etsy, you can easily sell printables or digital downloads straight from your social media accounts. It’s never been easier to create socials and sell goods directly from those accounts.

7. Food Service or Retail

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This is one industry that is in desperate need of workers right now, even for just a few hours a week. The food service industry can be a great way to make extra cash, especially through tips. You can serve tables or bartend, and you don’t have to work many hours a week to pocket a little extra cash. Plus, food service can help you interact with people and take your mind off of the daunting grad program you’re enrolled in.

You can also make extra money working retail a few hours each week. Local department stores often need retail or inventory workers, especially during the holiday season, so take advantage of this time and snag one of those seasonal retail jobs.

8. Sell Items Online

There are a variety of online platforms you can use to sell items. Craigslist used to lead the way in online selling, but now it’s easier than ever to sell items on social media platforms like Facebook Marketplace and Poshmark.

You can sell virtually anything on Facebook Marketplace. Items aren’t required to be in like-new condition or brand name to be sold on Facebook Marketplace, but they are more likely to be sold if they are in good condition.

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9. Become a Consultant

Multi-level marketing is a great way to earn some extra money each month. Some businesses only require a small amount to start consulting and then begin paying immediately once you sell your first product or when you sign up another consultant underneath you.

Final Thoughts

Ask yourself how much money you need to make and then create a budget. Your budget should consist of both your income and your expenses as a graduate student. This will help you determine how much money you need to make each month so that you can decide what type of job will be best for you.

You should also look at how many hours you will be going to class each week for grad school. You don’t want a part time job that you take to help you get through school to have the opposite effect and cause you to neglect your class time. Make sure that you can balance both graduate school and the job you take on.

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