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Best Summer Job Ideas for High School & College Students

Best Summer Job Ideas for High School & College Students

As a high school or college student, earning your own money can be very gratifying.

You are padding your resume, learning some skills, and you can pay for things on your own. But it’s not for everyone to work part-time all the time. Some prefer to work over summer break when there are six weeks or more to work as many hours as they can.

Applying for seasonal jobs can be tricky; most employers interview and finalize their staff well before summer starts, to ensure they have enough staff and that work schedules do not clash. If you are looking for a summer job, it may be beneficial to apply sooner rather than later.

So, here are some of the Best Summer Job Ideas for High School & College Students that you may want to look into.

best summer job ideas for high school college students

Babysitting/Au Pair/Nanny

Since school is out and some daycare centers close for the summer, many parents are looking for childminders to take care of their little ones while they are at work. It is a bonus if you are a licensed driver as well.

You will likely be required to learn the basics of first aid and CPR. Many children have medical conditions that you will need to be aware of. Mostly, your job will be to make sure they are fed, and that they have new and exciting activities to do every day.

What age group will suit you best?

If you aren’t sure what age group you can handle the best, try volunteering at a children’s hospital, a school for children with special needs, or a children’s home first. Then, place an ad on your local Facebook groups to advertise your services.

It is good to get a teacher to write you a reference that testifies to your ability to follow instructions and responsible nature. As a babysitter, you can earn around $12 per hour on average. Your experience and extra added services such as driving kids around or being able to tutor them or teach them certain skills may add to your hourly wage.

Check your state…

Depending on the state, you may not be allowed to drive children around unless you are of age, as it counts as “operating heavy machinery,” which is considered dangerous work for minors.

Summer Camp Employee

Once again, parents are looking for places to mind their kids while they are at work. Some summer camps are only daily activities; others host children for the duration of the summer. Either way, there are several jobs available at summer camps each year.

Camp Cook

As a cook, you may be given a list of things to prepare and cook for the children. However, those with some experience in the food industry and a working knowledge of food costing may have added responsibilities. This means that you may have to come up with meal plans that will keep the kids well fed, and prevent their blood sugar levels from crashing.

However, you will also have to keep food portions and cost in mind, as it has to be affordable. You will also have to take any specific dietary needs of the kids into consideration and have vegan, nut, and gluten-free options available.


If you are working as a cleaner, you may be expected to keep all the facilities, including the bathrooms, clean. This may require a strong stomach and some elbow grease now and then; children can, and often do, get ill or make an excruciating mess.

best summer job idea for high school college students

Maintenance Worker

As a maintenance worker, you will do upkeep at the camp. Depending on whether or not the camp is on or off the grid, you may be required to change some light bulbs or fix some things. However, some laws may prevent you from doing certain tasks if they are deemed hazardous and you are younger than 18.

Camp Counselor

Camp counselors work directly with the children, completing activities with them. It will also be your job to mentor the kids, teach them new things, and help them work together as a group. At some point, you may need to address conflict and even bullying.

First Aid Camp Attendant

If you are working in the first aid or nurse’s office, parents may leave instructions for you to administer medications to their kids at certain times, or to check on a child’s blood sugar if they are diabetic. You may also have to put band-aids on ouchies, do first aid, and keep an eye on kids who are ill until their parents or someone can pick them up.

Jobs at summer camps pay around $10 per hour, but it depends on your skillset, how much responsibility you are taking on, and which role you will take on.

best summer job idea for high school college student

Uhaul Sales Representative

Most people with kids will try to move in the summertime only, as this will not interrupt their school time. The kids can then spend some time with their friends before they move, or get settled in before the next school year starts.

As a Uhaul sales representative, you can book trucks, trailers, and movers out to clients, and handle customer service issues. The nice part of this job is that even part-time employees get some of the company benefits and possibly even great commissions. It is home-based as well, and you will likely have a flexible work schedule.

Want to know more? Then check out my in-depth look at How to Become a Teen Uhaul Reservation Sales Agent.

Seasonal Farm Work

Next in my rundown of the Best Summer Job Ideas for High School & College Students, farm work is a tough job. You will need to spend long hours in the sun too. You will either do agricultural work or rearing animals. But keep in mind that although your daily hours may be capped at some point, you may be required to start work before sunrise or only finish after midnight.

There are some laws in place for hazardous jobs; you may not be able to work with heavy machinery before the age of 18.

summer job idea for high school college student

Seasonal Tourist Work

Aside from summer camp, holiday destinations may have similar openings for their summer work schedule as they have an influx of guests. You can apply at zoos, restaurants, holiday resorts, and entertainment centers for a variety of jobs.

However, before you apply for work at any venue that serves alcohol, check in with your local labor department. Depending on the state and your age, you may be barred from serving alcohol, working at an establishment that sells more alcohol than food, or working at an establishment that serves alcohol at all.


Shovel snow in the winter or trim the hedges in the summer. Many don’t have regular gardeners, as their gardens are low maintenance or they simply can’t afford it. However, during summer, the bushes, trees, and lawns can get out of hand quickly.

Even if you don’t offer a permanent garden service, many will be glad to employ you to do a quick trim and maintenance of their yard a few times during summer, just to keep things tidy. Others may need the benefit of a young and able body to help them move, plant, or install some things in their gardens, as it’s a good time for a little landscaping and renovation.


An internship may be a fantastic way to get a foot in the door after you graduate. To figure out if that line of career is what you would like to pursue. It may or may not be paid. But an internship from a reputable company can go a long way in terms of experience.

House/Pet Sitting/Dog Walking

Families go on holiday and need someone to take care of their home and their pets while they are away. You will have to make sure that the place is maintained. The pets are looked after and stimulated to avoid them getting depressed from not seeing their owners.

You may also need to walk the dogs, take them to a doggy park and get any pent-up energy out; frustrated dogs are often destructive and will annoy the neighbors too.

You might also want to check out How to Become a Teen Pet Sitter, How to Become a Teenage Dog Walker, or our in-depth Pet Sitter Job Description.

summer job idea for high school college students

Tutor/Online teacher

Some students are stuck in summer school, or they need to up the ante on certain skills and knowledge before the next semester. You can tutor them and help them in the subjects they are struggling with. There are also kids across the globe that have a different school schedule or are homeschooled. These kids often make use of online teachers to help them with subjects they find difficult to grasp.

Find Out If You’ll Need A Work Permit!

Well, let’s have a look! I have created an entire section on our website just for teens. What they need to work in their specific states, what the age limits are as well as the working restrictions, etc.

So, check out the articles I have put together to find the info for the state you plan on working in! The list begins with my How to Get a Work Permit in California, How to Get a Work Permit in Maryland, or my How to Get a Work Permit in Illinois, as well as my How to Get a Work Permit in Arizona in 2023.

Next, our website also covers How to Get a Work Permit in Massachusetts, How to Get a Work Permit in North Carolina, or perhaps our How to Get a Work Permit in New York, How to Get a Work Permit in Michigan, or How to Get a Work Permit in Washington and How To Get A Work Permit In New Jersey.

Lastly, I also have a few remaining states that I cover with my How To Get A Work Permit In Louisiana, How To Get A Work Permit In Georgia, along with my How To Get A Work Permit In Ohio, or How To Get A Work Permit In Oregon, and my How To Get A Work Permit In Pennsylvania, or even How to Get a Work Permit in Hawaii for an awesome summer job! Hope you find our articles helpful!

Final Thoughts

Well, now you know about some of the Best Summer Job Ideas for Students to choose from. But don’t forget about the labor laws too! If you are a minor, check in with your local labor department to ensure that you have a work permit ready if necessary. As well as our articles mentioned above that will also cover all restrictions and regulations.

As a minor or an adult, the legal working hour requirements and expectations are important. Because as we all know, many companies take advantage of young employees.

Enjoy your Summer Job and earning that extra cash!

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