There are so many challenges that face students especially undergraduates. But of all challenges, money is the first. Undergraduates need money for so many things and for some whose monthly allowances are not enough, borrowing has always helped.
Because they go a borrowing, the next allowance that they get almost gets used up in paying back to their creditors. This has been a serious challenge for many and they are left with the option of living in fear and isolation because they have little or nothing- the money available is only those meant for departmental payments, course registration, photocopying, and buying of handouts and textbooks.
How can someone be in school and still have enough money to spend even after paying for all that is needed? How can an undergraduate live a comfortable life? How can they be financially free? How can an undergraduate be less dependent on his or her parents? All these are questions that need answers.
In this post, a student entrepreneur explains how he survives in school- how he does legal businesses in school and still study at the same time. Sit back as we discuss his journey.
Businesses you can do as an undergraduate and become financially free
There are so many businesses both online and offline that people can do and live happily. Some need start-up capital while others don’t. We know that as students, not enough money is available to us and so, we would only like to do businesses that require little or no start-up capital. This is why we handpicked these businesses for you. Below are some businesses you can do an undergraduate:
Freelancing: in many universities and colleges, there are free internet facilities and this makes freelancing ideal for students. Do you know how to write articles, design websites, logos, flyers and the likes, do you know how to write songs, sing, perform, and do you know how to do anything at all? If yes, then freelancing is for you.
What exactly is freelancing? In its simplest term, freelancing is a type of business in which you do particular pieces of work for different organizations, rather than working all the time for a single organization. In today’s world, freelancing doesn’t only mean working for organizations alone, there are thousands of individuals who want people to work for them and get paid per work completed.
There are also sites where you can locate these people and companies that need your services. Someone might want you to design a blog or build a website for him, design a logo, flyer or cartoon for his company, business or blog, sing for him, write songs for him, etc.
I started as a freelancer some years back says James, a student of the University of Lagos, and the site that I found people who needed my services was fiverr.com. I started as an article writer because I was good in writing and I got paid in dollars. I stopped collecting allowances from my parents in my second year, and also paid my tuition fees from this business.
During holidays and weekends, I search for jobs on Fiverr and earned my first $1000 within one year. With time, I became known and my earnings increased also.
The most interesting part about freelancing is that all you need is just a phone with internet connection, determination to succeed and persistence.
Other freelancing sites include:
Tutorials: yes! Tutorials I said. Do you know any course at all? Are you good in any field? Then you have potentials of becoming financially free. You could organize tutorial classes for students in your class or in lower years for a fee. The most interesting part is that they will be willing to pay as far as you know your onions. You can also add the option of writing assignments for people and get paid for it. there are so many people who thrive by writing assignments, why not join them?
Chucks a student of the University of Nigeria Nsukka has this to say: “I started teaching since I left secondary school and up till date, I still organize tutorials for students in the university. I have been financially free since I started this and at least, some fees are taken care of by me without having to contact my parents all the time. Although this requires you to always study, it pays well.”
You don’t only have to be teaching people about courses, you can organize dancing classes if you are a good dancer, organize voice training sessions, code camps for developers, graphics designing sessions, etc. and still make cool money. The most important thing is just for you to have the skills and be willing to teach, money will run after you.
You should also know that enough advertisement and publicity is needed for this to become a success. You can take a few friends around your school, inside lecture halls and advertise for your tutorial classes and pull some stunts that will make them trip and want to come for your tutorials.
Online registration services: at the beginning of every semester, there is always a need for every student in any school to do some kind of registration online. Also, scholarships are frequently registered for and the truth is that most people don’t know how to do them. You might have also seen several people who open up registration shops around the school and you don’t know they make thousands in the process. You make your money by charging them a token for the services you render.
All you need to have is a laptop, a generator, internet connection and a printer. You might not really have to be the owners of these gadgets; find people who have and borrow theirs. If you have the money to buy them, you can as well buy them and enjoy all the profits realized.
Buying and selling of used products (merchant): the truth still remains that students tend to sell their property at cheaper rates especially during any semester ending. You can leverage on this and rake in thousands for yourself. You can buy these properties like phones, cookers, air conditioners, rugs, mats, etc. and sell them to people living within the university community at a higher price. There are so many people who are into this business and are making cool money.
At the end of any education year, graduates sell their property and you can buy these properties from them, sell to outsiders or other students at a higher cost.
Blogging: this is another sharp way you can make money as a student. There are so many student bloggers who earn a lot from it. Before you go into blogging, you will first find out a niche you can comfortably research and write articles on. You can sell ad spaces on your site or even apply for AdSense from Google and get paid per click. There are also thousands of other ad agencies you can use.
There are free and paid hosting companies that you can use depending on your budget and what you want. For example, this blog runs on a free hosting service provided by Google called Blogger. There are also free hosting platforms like wordpress.com and paid to host by wordpress.org. It is important that you do not copy articles from other blogs so as to stand out and be unique.
Social media management: are you a social media enthusiast? Do you have large fans across different social media sites? You can leverage on this and rake in thousands monthly. All you need to do is to like, share and comment on their posts and manage their pages, groups, etc. for them. Search online for opportunities and you will get paid doing what you love to do.
You can also start a YouTube channel and showcase your services, entertain people, and rake in thousands monthly. You must also make sure videos are 100% unique and are created by you to avoid penalties.
To succeed as a YouTube channel owner, you would have to get lots of subscribers, apply for AdSense for videos or receive adverts from companies.
Student seller: have you not seen your classmates and fellow students sell goods inside classrooms? You must have seen them. As a student, you can make money off some little things that people do not take seriously. You can start selling full scarp sheets to your classmates, sell phone accessories like earphones, headphones, chargers, power banks, etc. and rake in money monthly.
You don’t have to be the owner of these products before you can start. You can reach an agreement with a seller and make some money as you sell.
Salome a student of UNIBEN has this to say: “As a student, I sold full scarp sheets and plain sheets to my classmates during exams, tests, and assignments. I buy 80 leaves long notes in bulk and sell each sheet, and make so much gain from it”
Steve, a student of computer science at ESUT, when interviewed said he sells electronic gadgets to his fellow students and so, do not depend 100% on his parents for certain fees. You can earn a lot from this as a student.
Imagine you as a female decide to sell weaves, women shoes, and underwear, etc. to your hostel mates. Before you know what’s happening, you will make so much money and become a well-known supplier. You can even extend this to lecturers and other staff in your university. If you have the money to buy them in bulk from dealers, that is perfect but if you don’t, then you might have to sell for someone till you get enough money to buy yours.
You can also sell recharge cards, resell data bundles, etc.
Affiliate marketing: affiliate marketing is another sharp way of making money as a student but requires consistency and hard work. As an affiliate marketer, you get paid a percentage of the money in which someone you referred paid for a product or service. There are several affiliate marketing sites that you can register under and start promotion. Such websites include clickbank.com, jvzoo.com, etc.
Affiliate marketing requires special training on what you are expected to do and lucky enough, you can get some of these training free on YouTube or just by searching Google. It is advised that you promote products that are in high demand and to the right audience. It is rather irrelevant to advertise web hosting services to peasant farmers and also not a good idea to advertise baby wears and accessories to teenagers.
There are several ways through which you can advertise your affiliate link and they include; Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites, blogs with high traffics, forum signatures, etc.
Event management services: there are several events that take place within and outside your school community and you can make thousands from them. You can form a group of 5 made up of disk jockey (music DJ), comedian, MC, and the likes. The group might advertise themselves and plan events for people and make cool money.
You can start from departmental nights, faculty nights, and hostel nights and if you become popular, you can even get jobs outside the school community.
Production and sale of soaps and other household toiletries: this is another great way of making money. You can learn how to produce these toiletries and you are assured of extra cash. You can just learn any of these during any holiday or even when your school is still in session. You can sell to your fellow students, lecturers and other school staff at a reduced price and with time, you will be a well-known producer.
The good thing about these ways of making money as a student that we have discussed is that you can continue them even when you graduate. There is no doubt that white collar jobs are scarce now and the few available ones are meant for people who have connections. This is to say that a skill learned or any business you start now as a student is capable of turning into a billion dollar company in the nearest future.
We would like to hear your views. Comment what you feel in the comment section.