10 Ways to Start Repaying Your Student Loan.


Actually, this article isn’t limited to students keen to start repaying your student loan. This may help any student looking to make some extra cash while studying. It isn’t hard to have a part-time job while being a full-time student. There are plenty of activities you can do while managing both your study and your social obligations.

Waitering to start repaying your student loan.

It might seem like a thankless job, but many students manage to do relatively well as a waiter or waitress. The key question is: are you charismatic? Because if you are, this will go a long way to repaying your student loan.

We’re not saying be a flirt with customers. But be warm, welcoming, and definitely deliver good service with a smile on your face. And you could earn yourself a nice tip – which is the primary way to make money in this side-hustle.


Related to waitering, but this time specifically in a club or fine drinking establishment. Emphasis on “fine”. You ideally want to work at a classy place, because if you’re good with your customers, you might hear the phrase “keep the change” a lot.

And that change could be R20 and upwards. Enough of these kinds of tips and you’re making moola to help in repaying your student loan. Plus, bartenders tend to get better pay than waiters. It helps if you’re good at mixing cocktails, so check online courses on this.

Be a tutor.

If you’re in your first year, but you did really well (i.e. got a distinction) in a certain subject, like English, you can advertise your services in teaching “slower” high school kids.

So, for instance, if Ye Olde abilities in Shakespeare are as keen as the swords used in Romeo & Juliet, your money situation doesn’t have to be a tragedy.

All’s well that ends well, and this applies to other, more complicated subjects too. Science, biology, history.

All have their lagging students. But a lot of English-speakers have trouble with die taal and if you’re Afrikaans and got a distinction in it, you could be the different between them passing or not.

Be a tutor, Part II.

On the other hand, if you’re a third year and above student, many universities formally make use of tutors as part of their courses.

A good example is the Journalism degree at Rhodes. Tutors actually have official classes with first or second year students and help them with the subject. The universities tend to pay well enough to help you in repaying your student loan.

Be a research assistant.

This one’s good for your academic career too! So, money and advancing your career, two birds one very large stone. This is across numerous disciplines, but the one most likely to require research assistants are in the Science Faculty. You’ll literally be doing it in the name of science! It’s possible if you pull your own weight enough, you’ll get your name on the paper too. This will assist in finding work after you graduate.

Be a librarian.

Yes, even in this day and age, the old traditional university library exists. Many students can’t afford a computer, so make use of the ones in the library.

Also, certain authors of certain works can’t be found on the ‘net. They do, however, exist in some dusty old tome that could be a prop on a Harry Potter set. Being a librarian just requires a decent memory and knowing more or less where everything is – system-wise. You’ll find, as the days go by, you’ll start knowing exactly where the most important authors are.

Be an actor.

If you do the drama, commit yourself fully to the role. Literally. There will be opportunities to be in student productions. Look for good scripts. Be dazzling. Be a star. Even if there are no plays, do some scriptwriting and collaborate with other students.

You can then control your own production. Get someone with killer design skills to do posters for you. If your play is enough of a hit, those roses flung on stage will be aflush with real-life money in terms of tickets.

If your play is REALLY good, then you could even take it down to the National Arts Festival in a little city known as Grahamstown. Side hustles like this can help you in repaying your student loan: talent scouts may notice you and you could end up cast in a television commercial looking for someone with on-screen presence.

Design your own job.

Perhaps you’re studying at a college. Studying design or art direction. Why wait until you’ve graduated before making money? Sure, you won’t be able to join an agency yet, but you could freelance at cheaper rates than those who have already graduated.

A lot of people are struggling in this economy. If your portfolio (from class assignments) already looks good, then you can advertise your services to some SME looking to save money, but still get good quality design. Bonus: you’ll already start getting published work out there you can use to showcase your portfolio when looking to join an agency post-graduation.

Be a pet sitter.

Do you love animals? Then this one’s for you. Especially if you have something trustworthy and innocent about your nature. Many people’s biggest gripes with having pets is being unable to leave them alone when they, say, want to go away for the weekend. Enter you. Have cards printed out or place posters in pet stores, and you could soon be feeding Fluffy his yum-yums.

The only tricky part is getting started. Once you’ve already had a few clients, you’ll have references for your services. Which makes you more trustworthy with Chairman Meow. If you happen to be studying veterinary science, that’s a big plus. People will automatically feel like they’re leaving their beloved Rover in the safest possible hands.

Be a kid-sitter.

If you have your own car, and your timetable allows for it, you can au pair. The only draw back is, you need to be (a) capable of not strangling brats; and (b) prepared for playing boring children’s games.

If you can do that, then you may have it in you to look after the children. This does tend to be a gender-biased job though. You’re far more likely to be trusted to look after kids if you’re a woman.

We hope this list of possible job opportunities to help you in repaying your student loan while studying helps. Or simply making the money needed for the big essentials in life. Like Prohep. Oh! If you’re a pharmacy student you could be a pharmacist’s assistant. That’s certainly the chemistry needed to pull in extra money.


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