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9 Ways to Make Extra Money as a Nigerian University Student

make money as a student

As a student, one of the wisest choices you can make is to explore ways to make extra money to support yourself.

If you’re a Nigerian university student, you know the struggle of balancing books, lectures, and a pocket-friendly lifestyle. Even with allowances from your parents, you may find that it will not always be sufficient to cover all your needs.

I once suggested the idea of starting a small business in school to my dad back then, and he frowned at it. Let’s face it – finding a balance between work, study, and achieving good results can be challenging without one of them taking a hit. So, I understood his concern(even though I didn’t listen🌝).

But I also understand your need to become independent. So, this is why I’ve put together the top 9 ways you can pump up your income without sacrificing your GPA or your sanity.

9 ways to Make Money as a Student

Here are nine realistic and actionable strategies to help you make extra money while in school.


Freelancing is a broad concept. But I want to believe that any type of work arrangement where you offer services to clients on a temporary or project basis, rather than being fully employed is called freelancing. And any skill that you can offer while doing this is a freelance skill. This can include digital skills such as graphics design, transcribing, blog writing, marketing, and so on.

Freelancing provides an opportunity to apply the knowledge gained in the lecture halls to real-world projects.
One of the perks of freelancing if done right, is the flexibility of being able to choose when to work and when not to. This flexibility in setting your work hours allows for effective time management, ensuring that freelance commitments complement rather than conflict with your school schedule.


If you have a flair for media, photography is one of the best skills to pick up as a student. There are always events hosted on Nigerian campuses like Induction ceremonies, convocations, conferences, and so on–Perfect opportunities for capturing memorable moments and earning some extra income.
Now, I get it – cameras can be expensive, and getting one might feel like a stretch. One thing you can do is to consider shadowing a seasoned photographer who already has all the fancy gadgets. Learn, assist, make some extra cash, and save up slowly until you’re able to get yours.
This is no longer about making a little extra cash. By seizing these opportunities now, you’re not only earning money, but it’s also a strategic move to lay the foundation for a potential career in photography down the road.

Explore Practical Skills

Ways to Make Extra Money as a Nigerian University Student

I get it; with all the tech hype, learning a practical skill might seem a bit old-school. But trust me, it’s still one of the smartest ways to earn some extra cash. Think about picking up skills like hairdressing, wig-making, revamping, tailoring or even barbing. And if you happen to stay in a school hostel, it’s even better. You can offer these skills to your hostel mates on weekends. It’s a win-win – you earn some cash, and your friends get a handy service.

Virtual Assistant

A virtual assistant (VA) is a remote professional who performs various administrative tasks for individuals or businesses. Your day-to-day tasks as a VA could involve things like email management, scheduling, data entry, and other specialized assignments like graphic design or content creation.

If you’re considering looking for a virtual assistant role, the nature of the job matters. Some virtual assistant tasks may be more time-consuming and demanding, while others might offer more flexibility. To excel as a virtual assistant and also a student, you must assess your current academic workload, and personal responsibilities to determine if you can allocate sufficient time to perform your tasks without compromising your studies.
One thing you can do to get opportunities like this is to look out for busy and comfortable career-driven people or entrepreneurs who are into a lot of things and might need help managing their tasks. Send them a personal email pitching your skills to them. And also ensure to discuss expectations, deadlines, and the level of commitment required for the virtual assistant job.

Get a part-time job

Here’s another traditional method for earning extra income as a student—sometimes the simplest ones are the most effective. Just look for a job around your campus that provides flexibility and convenience. Be honest with the business owner about being a student. By transparently communicating your student status, you not only build trust but also create an opportunity for understanding and cooperation. Many employers appreciate the dedication of student workers and may be willing to accommodate your academic schedule. Additionally, consider exploring part-time opportunities with event planners, ushers, catering services, and similar roles, as they often operate mainly on weekends. This way, you won’t have to compromise your studies while still finding a reliable source of additional income.

Social Media Management

First things first – if your phone is practically an extension of your hand, you’re halfway there. Being a social media manager means understanding the ins and outs of platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. You have to understand how metrics work, know how to craft relatable content and use tools like Canva for basic designs. The more you know, the better you’ll be at managing them.

Staying on top of trends is also crucial as a social media expert. From viral memes to the latest dance challenge, being able to jump on these trends keeps your game stronger. You’ll be the voice behind the brand, so being able to express ideas clearly is a big deal.
This is the kind of job you can do from the comfort of your home. You can work on weekends and already have posts scheduled for the week. This helps you manage your time better and also ensures that you have more time to focus on your studies.

Start a business

This is one of the hardest things to do as a student, but it’s not impossible. Starting a business is a flexible way to earn a comfortable income as a student, provided you have the capital. Here are some businesses you can start while in school;

  • Shoemaking: You can enroll in a shoe-making class and start building nice slippers and shoes for students like you. If you do not have the money to learn from a reliable company, you can look out for entrepreneurship programs from the government or private institutions. I also enrolled in one while in school, so yes, they exist.
  • Cooking

Setting up a food business is one of the less capital-intensive hustles to start while in school. Many students are either too lazy to cook or simply do not have the time, so you want to take advantage of that. A good way to start without spending a lot of money is by offering a suitable food plan for your customers. You send your potential customers a food plan and tell them to pay in advance. You could set up a weekly food plan or monthly food plan, based on your schedule. That way, you get to deliver your service without breaking the bank.

  • Sell Bags and Clothes

Nigerian students have been doing this since God knows when. It’s not new, so you can also join the wagon. Order items from wholesalers that sell for cheaper prices and resell these items to students like yourself. You can set up your store online or on social media. You can also go a step further by taking these items to their rooms and marketing them to them right there.

Learn a high-income skill

If you already learned a high-income skill like coding, design, digital marketing, etc., congratulations! You are one step closer to becoming a student baller. If not, you need to be able to learn in your spare time and put in the work (weekends preferably) required to master these skills.
Now, I will not advise you to take on a full-time job while still in school. One thing you can do is look for a part-time or freelance role that offers flexibility and lets you take breaks during exams in school. If you don’t do this, there’s a chance that your academics will suffer.


If you are one of those gurus in school, this one is for you. Tutoring is a good way to make money while in school and doing this not only provides financial benefits but also offers a platform for personal and academic growth. One of the key advantages of tutoring again, is its flexibility. As a tutor, you can set your schedules, making it easier to accommodate academic plans and personal activities.

Paid Internship

Applying for paid internships gives you a chance to apply theoretical knowledge gained in the lecture hall to real-world scenarios. Unlike some traditional part-time jobs, paid internships align closely with your fields of study, and also provide hands-on experience that can significantly improve your resumes. Here are some companies that hire students as interns in Nigeria.


If you’ve read till this point, I hope you’ve been able to discover one or two skills that you can try your hands on in other to make extra money as a student. Your journey to financial independence is as unique as your fingerprint. From learning practical skills and freelancing to delving into the world of business and social media, the possibilities are endless.

Be open to exploring new opportunities, and don’t shy away from channeling your creativity into avenues that align with your passions.




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