Ah, college. It is a time where you’ll spend thousands and yet be terribly broke at the same time. Because of weird school schedules, most students have to find unique jobs that will accommodate to their needs. A lot of students will take up a part-time job or work for the school, however, with the recent economic downturn a lot of college students are having a tougher time finding an outlet for some extra cash. Aside from donating blood or other such instant cash schemes it seems as though most people tend to overlook the freelancing gig—it does take quite some time and work, but, what job doesn’t?
Another reason for the hesitancy might be the inconsistency that can arise from freelance work. While a part-time job will pay you every two weeks or so, a freelance job is dependent on how much time you spend on trying to make money. Or, perhaps there is uncertainty in how exactly a freelance job works. Well, this article here is a nifty little list of the pros of going freelance while in college! That way, you can find out if you’re ready to give it a try.
Making your own schedule. Oh yes, it’s true: as a freelancer, you will be making up your own schedule and that means deciding how much time you wish to put into your work. During those more stressful semesters at school, you can lessen the work load of your freelance job without the hassle of asking for less hours through management or trying to find someone else to cover your shift.
Building professional relationships. As part of a resume, everyone needs references and some future employers (especially for an actual career) will want to dig up those references in order to learn a little bit more about you. When you acquire clients for your freelancing gigs, those same people turn into professional references to place on your resume. Also, if you happen to become successful in your freelancing job, you now have established clients for credentials to get even more clients!
Using what you’re learning or already know. The biggest question that a student might ask (even me) is “when will I ever need this in real life?” Well, that could be now. Use what you learn and you’ll see it in a whole new perspective. Those economic and finance classes will finally come in handy when calculating rates and your hours of pay, and learning that new but boring software in computing classes can also be used professionally.
Gaining experience. Whether you’re working freelance or at the local coffee shop, it is still considered experience on a resume. But, placing “Freelance Web Designer” with some credentials on a resume might be a bit cooler, and come in handy, when applying for that web design career after college.
Feeling confident in your abilities. This goes hand-in-hand with the aforementioned reason in that with that experience you’ll also probably feel a bit more confident about your different skills and also with your knowledge of the “real world”.
There are several other pros; however, those are the top that any student should consider. Though, a warning: freelancing is not a job where you can just sit around and do nothing and expect a paycheck out of it. You are your own boss, literally. You control how much effort you put in and how much work you put out. It is definitely something to look into if you’re up to the challenge!
For some more resources, check out links that I found to be useful when I was thinking of freelancing while hitting the textbooks in the extra information box!