Disclaimer: This would be useful primarily for the Indian audience.
A lot of students in India want to learn how to make money parallel to their college studies. Due to sheer talent in the country and a huge amount of requirement in India and even in foreign countries, there is a large opportunity lying in front of you as a student. You can make decent money working as a freelancer if you have at least one marketable skill.
I remember the date 16th July 2013 - the day I joined college. On this day, I had decided that now, I am on my own and I should not rely on my parents for any money. FIITJEE was kind enough to pay Rs. 1.0 lakhs a year as a scholarship for my 4 years of B. Tech since I had obtained a top 50 JEE rank. (On a side note, this amount would have been 6.0 lakhs per year, had I got the same rank in JEE 2014 :P).
Coming from a business family, I always wanted to find ways by which I can make some side-money alongside my college studies. So, I made a lot of efforts to do that. Here are some ways by which I made money in college:
- Solved JEE Main 2014 paper for a coaching institute to earn Rs. 4,000 in a single day. Coaching institutes have to publish solutions to JEE paper quickly. A friend of mine and I helped them do that and we made a quick buck.
- Created JEE question bank and solutions for an e-learning platform and made some Rs. 13,000 in a month.
- Created a website for a startup and made Rs. 10,000 in a week.
- Wrote solutions to computer science books and made some Rs. 1.2 lakhs in a few months.
- Took TAship (Teaching Assistant) for 4 semesters (17 months) and got paid Rs. 6,000 per month, for a total of Rs. 1.02 lakhs. I took TAship not to make money, but because I enjoyed interacting with juniors.
- Created trading alphas for a US-based hedge-fund and made Rs. 2.5 lakhs in a matter of 4 - 5 months.
- Created Machine Learning models for a US-based startup to earn some Rs. 60,000 in 1 month.
So basically, I made some Rs. 5.6 lakhs by doing freelancing during the 4 years of my college. My college fee was almost Rs. 1.5 lakhs per year. By doing freelancing, I could pay for almost entire college fees. This, of course, excludes the money earned during my internships.
So, how can you as a student make money during your college?
Here are some great ways:
- Blogging/Content Writing: this is by far the easiest. Create blogs for someone in the domain where you are knowledgable.
- Digital Marketing: handle someone’s social media channels and make money. Talk to your uncle who runs a business. They can be your first customer.
- Software Development: work with a startup in the ideation stage and help them build their website and mobile app. They can easily pay you Rs. 10,000 - Rs. 25.000 a month if you do a great job. Talk to your cousin who is starting up.
- Video Editing: again, this falls on the marketing side. It is quite easy and startups would love to pay you if you do it for an affordable price.
There are some great freelancing platforms where in fact, you can make a lot of money if you land up with a long-term client. Upwork, Fiverr, Truelancer, Freelancer, etc.