The Creative Cash Corner

Illustration by Taylor Shanklin | The Collegian

Let’s be honest. In college, there is no such thing as having too much money. While some of us slave over academic work, others are punching in one, two or even three part-time jobs. Regardless of how many working hours you’re clocking, one truth remains: we need that cash.

So, because we’re all broke college students on some level, here are some nontraditional ways to make a buck.

Online Surveys

By taking online surveys, students have the ability to make money without leaving the comfort of their room. All that is required to take an online survey is Wi-Fi and a working computer.

“It was easy,” Bryan DeBaun, sophomore in computer science, said of his online survey experience. “It was about fast food restaurants and why you ate there, which ones you preferred and why. I believe I was paid $25.”

The survey topics can vary, as can the requirements for eligibility. Each survey will have its own demographic of people and its own requirements for eligibility, which can include topics such as age, gender or race. Surveys can be found on a variety of sites, often found on nationwide survey sites or linked from other sites.

“I think it was through an online scholarship search,” DeBaun said. “Eventually, it just took me to a website that paid you for surveys.”

However, with online surveys, it is important to find a legitimate one. According to an article on the website How Stuff Works, a legitimate survey site should not make you pay for access and it is always helpful to read the privacy statements and disclaimers closely. Simple things like this can ensure that you get paid for your time.

If you would like to take online surveys, follow this link for a few good places to start.

Donating Plasma

Through donating plasma, students can help others while making extra money on the side. According to CSL Plasma’s website, requirements for donating plasma include being at least 18 years old, healthy, 110 pounds or more and passing a pre-screening questionnaire.

“I found out through a buddy of mine at work,” Jacob Taylor, senior in marketing and management, said. “He’s gone twice a week all summer.”

There is a CSL Plasma Center at 1130 Garden Way in Manhattan. According to its website, a donor can make up to $300 a month, although an exact amount could not be determined from the center at publication.

Reselling Books

Reselling used textbooks to stores or fellow students can be a simple way to make more room on the bookshelf and less room in the wallet. Though a used textbook usually doesn’t sell for the same amount it was bought for, it does allow for extra spending money.

“I would definitely do it again,” Mike Brown, junior in sociology and political science, said. “I bought them from an online site. I would typically sell them to other students who need the book, because some of the online sites don’t buy the books back and students always need the books. It’s nice to help them and it’s nice to make a little money on the side.” There are also local, used bookstores in the Manhattan area that will buy used and old books. It can be done through certain online websites that buy and sell used books as well. However, in these cases, the books would have to be shipped and assessed for their condition before the seller would receive payment.

Sites such as TextbookRush and Amazon are good places to start for online textbook buying and selling.


What students may not realize is that As can pay. Tutors at the Academic Assistance Center in 101 Holton Hall are students that feel as if they can help others do well in classes they excelled in. Tutoring is a paid job that allows students to step into a teaching role in subjects like math and language. The center does have some requirements in order for a student to be qualified to become a tutor.

“You need to come to the tutoring center, fill out an application, bring a copy of your Degree Audit Report and (the student) must have made a B or better in the class that they wish to tutor and an accumulative GPA of 3.0 or better,” Kimberly Dierks, tutoring coordinator, said.

Students can locate their DARs through their iSIS account. As a tutor, students can make $7.75 an hour. During the school year, international students can work a maximum of 20 hours a week and non-international students can work a maximum of 30 hours a week. However, all tutors can work up to 40 hours a week during the summer. While working, students are allowed this unique opportunity to make extra money and interact with other students in an academically centered environment.

“It helps to reinforce what they have learned and they meet new people, new tutors and the students they work with,” Dierks said. “It’s a very pleasant and enjoyable atmosphere to work in.”

These are just a few cash flow opportunities available to students; several more exist across and outside of campus, just waiting to be discovered.

My name is Emily Moore and I'm a senior majoring in English and mass communications with a minor in leadership. I love to read, write and edit. During my free time, I enjoy doing crossword puzzles, rock climbing and spending time with my friends.