Best Opportunities for College Students
Looking for a Summer Job

See also: Finding a Job

Getting a job is rarely easy, but what if you’re a college student with very little work experience, and only a few months to spend working? In that case, it can be even trickier. The good news though is that you don’t have to conduct the search on your own; you could use a service like Salarship to find low-requirement jobs in your area. Once you really get plugged in, you might realize that there are more opportunities than you thought.

When people talk about summer jobs for college students, they’re often referring to working in the food or hospitality industries. After all, Starbucks hires employees from the age of 15, so you know they aren’t asking for 10 years of experience. While that can be a great option as a temporary job, it isn’t everyone’s cup of tea (or coffee). If you’re interested in learning more about possible job opportunities as a college student, just keep reading!

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Rideshare or delivery driver

If you have a car and a driver’s license, this could be the perfect choice. You get to set your own availability, so it could be more than just a summer job; you could keep going on a part-time basis once school starts back up. Rideshare services (such as Lyft or Uber) and food delivery services are booming at the moment, so now is a great time to join the ranks.

Dog walker

You might end up pet-sitting for a family friend, or you could find pet owners in need of extra help on sites like Wag! and Rover. If you wanted to make even more money, you could take on multiple clients. Fill up your schedule with several walks a day; since you can take several dogs on a walk at once, you could end up making a pretty hefty hourly rate with enough planning. Once again, this is the kind of job where you can dictate your own availability, which is always a plus.


This is one of the quintessential summer jobs: the kids are out of school, the parents want a pair of helping hands around the house, and there are hordes of college students looking for work. With a ton of websites and apps that connect nannies with families, it shouldn’t be too hard to find a nannying job.

Food service or restaurant worker

Flipping burgers and waiting tables has long been considered the first choice of people who need temporary employment, and for good reason – restaurants are always in need of more staff. The summer season tends to be a busy time for most restaurants, and that coincides perfectly with all the college students who get out of school and start looking for a job. This type of job doesn’t usually require any work experience either, which is another factor that makes it ideal for students.

Retail employee

Here’s another example of a seasonal job that doesn’t require a lot of skill. What it may require, however, is patience; retail jobs are notorious for the needy customers that workers have to deal with. However, no job is perfect and, as far as temporary employment goes, retail work is one of the top choices among college students. The winter holiday season gives students another opportunity to pick up some extra hours as well.

Social media manager for local businesses

If you were looking for something that doesn’t involve a lot of person-to-person interaction, this could be it. The younger generations have a skill that a lot of older people do not: social media savvy. They know how to look relevant online without coming off as a try-hard, which is exactly what some local businesses need. You will have to demonstrate basic writing and communication skills, but aside from that, a bit of internet know-how should qualify you for the job.

Office assistant

There are a couple of advantages to this job. First, it looks good on a resume. Second, it can pay better than a lot of other summer jobs. You’ll be doing things like taking messages from phone calls, ordering office supplies, and coordinating schedules. Nothing terribly difficult, but still valuable if you’re skilled at being a team player. If you have plans to get a more “official” office job in the future, this could be the first step to showing potential employers that you have what it takes.


If there’s a need in your area for landscaping services, this could be a great seasonal job to apply for. It’s more physically demanding than a lot of other jobs, but you could also get paid more. If you were working for a company, you might be responsible for grunt-work. If you went into business on your own, though, you do more work – but make more money.

Camp counselor

With thousands of summer camps across the US, there’s plenty of demand for camp counselors. You could even pick the type of camp that suits you best, such as comedy/drama camps, silent retreats, or outdoor adventure camps. Keep in mind, however, that some camps will want you to have CPR certification, or previous experience working with kids. Not only will you get to spend more time outdoors, but this type of job also looks good on a resume.

Lifeguard or swim instructor

If you love spending time in the sun, this could be a much better fit for you than a job in the retail or fast-food industries. In addition to looking for this type of position online, try visiting community pools or beaches; if they’re looking for seasonal help, they’ll often simply hang up a couple of signs up rather than listing themselves online.

The takeaway

If you’re a college student looking for a summer job, your options may be a bit limited, but they might not be as limited as you thought. As long as you know what to look for, the main thing you’ll need is some perseverance as you sort through your options. It might take a few tries, but given today’s job market, you’ll get there eventually!

About the Author

Lauren is a Texas native who has appreciated the craft of good writing from a young age. If she isn’t working on her latest writing project, she’ll probably be busy sewing, trying a new cheesemaking technique, or fermenting something tasty.