If you’re in need of a side hustle, you should consider a job as an adjunct teacher at a local college, or in the case of online classes, maybe even a distant one.  The entry barriers may be fewer than you think.

Colleges generally require teachers to have a master’s degree in the subject they’d like to teach or any master’s degree plus at least 18 graduate credit hours in the subject.  However, hiring committees may also consider candidates with alternative qualifications such as high school teaching experience or industry certification.  Past formal teaching experience is also usually not required—the interview will likely include a follow-up teaching demo. 

Here are the pros and cons of adjunct college teaching.

The Good Things About Adjunct College Teaching:

Fulfillment

If you love helping people (and especially love sharing your knowledge or skills), there’s no field as rewarding as education.  Ask yourself if you’ve sought out opportunities to teach informally—perhaps by training colleagues at work, leading a Sunday school class, or volunteer tutoring.  If so, you’ll probably find this work very gratifying.

Reduced Commuting Time

You generally only have to be on campus when your class meets and a bit before and after to answer student questions and/or hold office hours if they’re required by your school.  Most traditional college classes meet once, twice, or three times per week, and colleges are increasingly offering more and more online and hybrid (reduced meeting time) classes to keep up with the evolving way today’s students learn. 

Convenience

In the same vein as a reduced commute, much of the work—grading, preparing for class, answering student email, etc.—can be done at home.  This is handy because, as we’ll discuss in the next section, you’re probably going to need a separate full- or part-time job.

The Things You’ll Want to Consider Carefully:

Low Pay

It’s no secret that teachers don’t choose their careers for the money, but unfortunately adjuncts earn the worst pay of all.  They’re paid per class taught, not per hour worked.  The adjunct rate of pay at the college I taught at was $1,700 per class.  Classes are generally four months long (a semester), so the harsh reality is that depending on how much time your teaching duties take, you could end up making less than minimum wage.  This means that for most, adjunct teaching can only be a side hustle.

What’s more, colleges often limit the number of courses an adjunct can teach per semester—the one I worked for had a cap of three per semester.  You may be allowed to work as an adjunct at other schools (check with your college to make sure), but keep in mind that you might have to adjust your material to meet their requirements.

No Job Security

Adjunct teaching is contract work, so there’s no certainty about the number of classes you’ll get to teach or if you’ll even be hired next semester.  Also, the full-time faculty at the college are required to teach a certain number of classes each term, so if one of their sections doesn’t fill up, a class that was originally assigned to you may be given to a full-timer at the last minute.

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Possible Lack of Autonomy

In attempts to ensure uniform student experience and outcomes, your college may require everyone who teaches a course to use the same materials, exams, etc.  If so, full-time faculty are usually in charge of choosing and creating these items, so as an adjunct you may feel as though you don’t have much say in how your class is taught.  On the other hand, it’s easy to see how receiving a highly-structured premade course could be a blessing for first-time teachers.

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The Verdict on Adjunct Teaching Jobs

Did the cons in the last section scare you straight?  Just remember that although working as an adjunct is low on financial rewards, it’s big on personal ones.  While adjunct teaching is more viable as a side hustle than a way to earn a living, if you feel called to teach, it’s a great way to try out a career in education and make extra money without a big commitment.  In any case, please thank a teacher in your life.

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It’s a truth universally acknowledged that if you’re a college student, you are in eternal need of both money and resume-building activities. Your summer vacation is the perfect time to earn cash and gain skills for your resume, too.

Employers like to see that you have an entrepreneurial spirit. It shows that you can set goals, reach milestones, and manage yourself. Having a summer side hustle on your resume sets you up for fantastic, engaging job interviews that lead to the career of your dreams. Here’s a few ideas to make cash this summer:

1. Tutor

While you’re in college, information is fresh in your mind from the numerous courses you’ve been taking. That knowledge can be immediately valuable to you if you start your own tutoring business.

You can tutor fellow classmates, high school students, or even adults. It’s not hard to find customers for your tutoring business; all you have to do is advertise your services. You can advertise for free on Craigslist, or with a flyer at your local library or community center. You can also post flyers around your college campus.

If you have a few dollars to invest in advertising, try posting a Facebook ad that targets parents in your area, or place an ad in your local paper.

Online tutoring services like VIPKid also hire college students as tutors. They help children from foreign countries learn conversational English. If you like being up late at night or early in the morning, international tutoring may be a good fit for you.

2. Drive People Around with Uber and Lyft

If you have a car, put it to work for you. It only takes a few minutes to become a chauffer with Uber or Lyft. You can conduct your entire business from your phone and work only the hours you want to work.

If your parents will let you borrow their mini van, you can become an UberXL driver and make even more cash by offering a bigger vehicle to haul more people. Whatever car you drive, you will need to keep it super clean. Some Uber drivers earn better reviews by offering their customers snacks, candy, and bottled water.

Uber and Lyft drivers do best in tourist areas and big cities, but small towns need them, too. It’s a good quick-start business that you can take with you when you go back to college in the fall (if you want to).

3. Deliver Food

Take out is awesome and a major time saver—as long as you don’t have to go pick it up. You can make extra money picking up food orders for people who order takeout from places that don’t deliver.

Uber offers takeout pickup and delivery services through their app, so even if you aren’t comfortable inviting strangers into your car, you can deliver their food and make some quick cash.

Retailers like Walmart have started curbside grocery pickup services. Uber used to have a service for picking up these orders, but have announced they are discontinuing it, which leaves a lot of angry people who like their groceries delivered. These are customers just waiting for your services!

You could start a side business on your own for picking up and delivering groceries. All you need to do is post an ad on Craigslist and Facebook, or post flyers at your local community center. Make sure you have business cards ready to give customers so they can spread the word about your magnificent delivery services.

The summer is the perfect time for college students to side hustle. Kids are out of school, so you can babysit. Neighbors go on vacation, so you can house sit. Grass grows, so mow yards. You can do this! #sidehustles #summervacation Click To Tweet

4. Be a Local Tour Guide

Summer is travel season, and no matter where you live, there’s probably something of local interest that tourist flock to see. You can make extra money escorting tourists around town and showing them the sights.

You can capture a niche market in your tour with a bit of creativity. You might give a food tour of a group of local restaurants, or a shopping tour though local antique stores. You might give a tour of the best local Geocaches. Think about a unique angle you can bring to a tour of something special in your area, and you will make money by the handfuls.

You can advertise your tour services on social media, like Facebook, but you can also set up a full tour booking experience for your customers on websites like ToursbyLocals.

5. Babysit

Since kids are out of school in the summer, you can start a side hustle babysitting school-aged children with relative ease.

Parents look for babysitters who are responsible and know something about childcare, so if you are an education major, make sure to emphasize that in your advertisements. You might also consider taking a basic first-aid course and CPR certification to put parents at ease with your crisis-handling skills.

The major challenge to babysitting in the summer is keeping the kids busy. Come up with a list of activities you can do with them, and share that with parents, too. Parents may be happy to help you with supplies for science experiments and art projects, and they may be open to you taking a few field trips, too.

You can advertise your babysitting services on Craigslist, or your can sign up for Care.com. Parents look for strong recommendations for babysitters, so have family and friends give testimonials on your baby-sitting abilities.

6. Become a Senior Companion

If children aren’t your thing, consider becoming a companion to an elderly person who needs help with daily tasks like running errands and preparing meals. Healthcare majors do well in this side hustle, but anyone with a compassionate, helpful spirit can become a senior companion for the summer.

You can advertise your services on Care.com, but also try local Moose and Elks lodges, as well as your local VFW.

7. Walk dogs

Nothing makes pet parents feel more guilty than leaving their fur babies alone for 8-10 hours while they go to work. If you love animals, you can start a business walking dogs in your neighborhood and make quick cash.

You can advertise your services just about anywhere, from Craigslist to your local community center and post office. Talk to dog owners who walk past your house everyday. Mention your services at your local pet store and with local dog groomers, too.

8. House Sit

Summer vacations are an American tradition. You can earn money taking care of people’s homes and pets while their out of town by starting a house-sitting business.

Offer services like bringing in the mail and newspaper, walking the dog, and maintaining the yard. You will want to check the house daily to make sure nothing is out of place. Some house sitters live in the house while the family is out of town, so offer this option too.

You can advertise your services in the normal places: Craigslist and the local paper. Have your references ready—your customers will want to know that you are trust worthy. This is a business that does will with word-of-mouth referrals, so make sure to tell your friends and family that you’re looking for houses to sit, and to recommend you to anyone they know who is going on vacation this summer.

9. Teach ACT/SAT prep classes

If you’re going to college, it probably hasn’t been very long since you took college entrance exams like the ACT and SAT. The summer is the perfect time for high school students to prepare for these exams, which should lead you to a fantastic side business teaching high schoolers how to improve their scores.

Create a few study games for your potential students, then advertise your services on social media. Offer to teach students online through Skype or Google Hangouts, and offer a wide range of hours to fit all schedules.

10. Mow Yards

Everyone who owns a home needs to cut their grass frequently in the summer. Borrow your parents’ lawn mower and make some quick cash cutting your neighbors’ grass.

This side hustle is an oldie but goodie, since the only overhead cost is gas for the lawn mower. You can make $50-100 per hour with good time management and only work a couple days per week!

11. Clean Pools

The biggest complaint pool owners have is that they have to constantly work at maintaining the pool. Even with an automatic pool vacuum, the pool still has to be manually skimmed and cleaned every few days. The water must be checked and balanced, too.

Put on your bathing suit and start a pool-cleaning business. It’s a good summer-only job because unless you live in Florida, Southern California, or another hot state, pools are a strictly summer thing. Like mowing yards, you can make $50 per hour with good time management, but you’ll stay cool all summer.

12. Teach Senior Citizens to Use Smartphones (and other tech)

Many senior citizens have smartphones but don’t really know how to use them. Use your tech-savvy to show them how to talk to their grandchildren on Facetime and you could earn some serious cash this summer.

Seniors Citizens want to learn how to use apps, read ebooks, and take pictures with their phones, but the opportunity doesn’t stop there! You can teach seniors to use their computers, sell things online, buy things online, download eBooks to various devices—you name it!

Local places seniors gather like libraries, bookstores, and VFWs look for people to teach classes in tech, so this side hustle is yours for the asking.

13. Sell Stuff on eBay

People will buy most anything on Ebay. You can create a good side hustle buying stuff at yard sales and thrift stores and selling it online. All you have to do is browse thrift stores and yard sales, look up objects as you find them, and see how much they’re selling for on the eBay app. Choose objects that are selling for more than you can buy them and voila! You have a side hustle.

If you are truly ambitious, you can try drop-shipping as part of your online sales business. It takes a bit of research to figure out which products sell best, and the summer is a great time to think about it.

14. Sell Crafts on Etsy

If you have a talent for making things, you can start and Etsy shop for less than a dollar. Etsy is for more than quilts and t-shirts. You will find printable files and patterns, custom logos for new businesses, and even website design. Browse Etsy’s listings and think about what you could create to make someone’s life easier. The things that sell best are the things that are either highly personalized or solve a problem.

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15. Become a Virtual Assistant

If you are good with social media, have relatively decent writing skills, and are highly organized, you could become a virtual assistant for a small business.

Not every business can afford to hire a full time administrative assistant, so they outsource administrative tasks like managing Facebook pages, answering emails, and organizing files. You can find this kind of gig on places like Fiverr and Upwork, but if you could also start your own local business by placing ads on social media and Craigslist.

Bonus Side Hustle: Rent Out Your Belongings with Fat Lama

You may not have a car or a spare room, but you can still take a slice of the sharing economy this summer by renting out something almost all of us have: stuff.

Fat Lama allows you to rent out your possessions (fully insured) to people nearby and make money from your unused stuff. Your stuff doesn’t have to be fancy. You can list anything from a hammer to a chocolate fountain. However, the slightly higher value items tend to attract more rentals.

Take a look around your house or dorm for unused bikes, cameras, or projectors to start making serious money. The great thing about Fat Lama is that since you are renting, you can keep making money out of the same items (unlike eBay where once it’s gone, it’s gone) so you only really need one item that rents well to make ongoing income.

The platform is easy to use; just sign up and list your items for free. You will be notified when you have a rental request–all you need to do is approve it and arrange the handover directly with the borrower. Of course, this doesn’t need to happen at your house; if you are more comfortable meeting in a public place, you can. Fat Lama manages all the payments so there’s no need to extract cash off people either, it’s all prepaid and will be paid directly into your bank account 24 hours after the start date of the rental.

Sign up here and get a $25 credit to spend on your first rental!

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15 Summer Side Hustles for College Students


One of the biggest perks of being a teacher is having a couple months off every summer. The first week or two feels awesome as you adjust to life without early mornings and strict routines. By about the third week, you need something to do. Why not earn some extra money this summer?

Educators are strong communicators with extensive knowledge on a variety of subjects. We’re lifelong learners, and we love to share our research with others. The world is full of excellent summer side hustles for teachers, if you know where to look.

1. Become a Freelance Writer

One of the easiest summer side hustles is freelance writing. You can find hundreds of gigs in all subject areas, and most of the time they pay rather quickly.

Freelance websites like  Fiverr and Upwork are a good place to start your search, but I’ve found many gigs on Flexjobs.com. They charge a bit to view their listings, but it’s worth it to find legit, at home jobs. Look around for a discount code.

Most of the freelance writing I’ve done the past ten years has been ghostwriting. It can be as simple as writing a blog post for someone to as complicated as drafting an entire book.

2. Teach Online

Online teaching is huge! You can find jobs in and out of your subject areas just by searching indeed.com for “remote faculty” or “online teacher.” Places like ConnectionsAcademy hire certified teachers all year, but there’s a large summer demand for students trying to get ahead in their studies or those tackling complicated subjects in the summer when there’s less distractions.

If you have a graduate degree, you can teach for online colleges. Any master’s degree gives you the credits you need to teach student development courses like “Student Success Skills,” and a lot of colleges require all students to take them, so there’s a high demand for good teachers. You can find these jobs by going directly to the university’s websites.

3. Tutor Online

You can tutor for any subject online, but there’s a high demand for English language tutoring. Children and adults in foreign countries need practice with native English speakers to refine their language skills. Look for jobs on places like VIPKid and FlexJobs.com.

You might also apply to tutor at your local community college or university. Most have online tutoring services as well as on-campus tutoring. SmarThinking is always hiring tutors, too.

4. Create Online Classes

Creating classes online is amazingly easy these days. Anyone with even basic computer skills can create online courses, and people pay for them, too.

You can create a course on any topic using a lightweight learning management system like Teachable. If you’re looking for a creative outlet for your teaching skills, this is a good option, and Teachable is free to start.

The only caveat is that online, make-a-profit learning management systems are not as robust as the ones we’re used to using. You don’t have a grade book, and you have to recognize that your learners progress through your materials at their own pace. I suggest starting a Facebook group so your learners have a place to connect with you and each other.

5. Write an eBook

eBooks don’t have to be 15 chapters and 100,000-words long. You can create a small novella or tutorial ebook at around 10,000 words and make a tidy profit. The best place to publish your ebook and see returns quickly is Amazon’s Kindle store.

Kindle promises that you can create your book in as little as 5 minutes and it will show in their stores in 24-48 hours. As far as pricing, most people who do this for a living recommend pricing your book below $9.99 because Amazon pays royalties of 70% for books in this price range.

6. Start a Podcast

You can make money through advertisement, sponsorships, and even subscriptions by creating a podcast. People look to podcasts to learn about most any topic, from entire foreign languages to basic grammar. One of my favorites taught me the basics of conversational French. Très bien!

You’ll need a good microphone, but “good” means “clear,” not “expensive.” You can upload your podcast to a variety of places, from the iTunes Store to SoundCloud.

7. Become a Virtual Assistant

Small businesses don’t always need full time assistants, so they look to hire someone part time to complete specific tasks. Employers are starting to realize they can save money by hiring virtual assistants who never come into the office at all. With your strong communication skills, you could pick up a summer gig as a virtual assistant with relative ease.

Take a peek at this task list from PennyHoarder. As you can see, virtual assistants perform tasks like proofreading, light web design work, customer support, and social media promotion.

Look for this type of job on places like Fiverr and Flexjobs, but don’t be afraid to post an advertisement for your services on places like Craigslist and Moonlighting.com.

8. Become a Notary

Notaries are always in high demand because court and business documents require notarization on almost everything. You can charge what you want for your services, and we’ve seen some notaries charge more than $6 per page!

Requirements to become a notary vary from state to state. Here in Florida, the cost is about $100. Notaries attend a 3-hour course and must seek bonding by a state agent.

9. Start a Blog

Blogging can make you a good amount of money in the long term, but it takes a lot of work. You could use your summer vacation to get your blog set up and established, and look for a good chunk of Christmas spending money if you keep up with your posting, promotion, and monetization.

InMotion Hosting is my favorite for blogging. They make everything super easy, from setting up WordPress to buying your domain.

You’ll need a good topic that you can write about a couple times per week. Stay away from topics that might get you fired, like “stupid parents” or “best homework answers.” Think about a topic that you know quite a bit about and write helpful, meaningful posts each week.

You’ll need a good topic that you can write about a couple times per week. Stay away from topics that might get you fired, like “stupid parents” or “best homework answers.” Click To Tweet

10. Become a Tour Guide

If you live in a town with historical or entertainment value, you can use your presentation skills to become a local tour guide. Create your own tours and promote them online via websites like Vayable and ToursbyLocals.

You can charge what you want for your tours. An Orlando-area tour guide charges $600 for an eight-hour tour of Winter Park and Mount Dora. His calendar shows bookings, so it’s definitely a viable business venture.

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