Students should be wary of nontraditional jobs

Alhi Leconte/Contributing Writer

From selling items on Ebay to making videos on YouTube, students are finding non-traditional ways to fund their college education.

Sophomore biology major, Natalie Mendez, produces YouTube videos on her beauty channel.

“In this generation, we have the technology to allow this type of employment to be available to us,” she said. “… They are also good because you can work on your own schedule and your own time.”

With the total student loan debt in the United States currently in the trillions, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, students graduate from college with a large debt that is likely to follow them for the rest of their lives. Because of recent technological advancements and the growth of social media platforms, many college students have found different sources of income to help them pay off their debt while in school.

This can include selling items on Craigslist, working for Uber or Lyft, YouTubing or blogging.YouTubers make revenue from Google ads, sponsorships, promotions, endorsements and fan donations through a service called Patreon.

YouTubers also earn money based on their amount of followers and views on their videos. Business Insider reports that a video creator earns about $2,000 for every million views, than 45 percent gets taken by YouTube before the IRS takes its part.

Mendez usually posts three videos during the school term and many more during long holiday breaks to prevent it from affecting her studies. Her videos take a few hours or days, depending on filming, editing and the specific purpose of video she shoots.

Once they reach a certain level of internet fame, YouTubers are also given opportunities outside of content creating. Colleen Ballinger, a well-known YouTube star, for example, was given a book deal and a Netflix series based on a character she plays in her videos.

Modern jobs like these can be a big help in paying for books and tuition however there is a fear that they can cause a decrease in a student’s’ academic focus. With these type of jobs, students control when they work and their hours so there is always the possibility of becoming accustomed to this new source of income so a college degree may drop lower on a student’s’ list of priorities.

Making the right job choice is essential for students. It’s important for students to choose a job they can balance and that can help pay off their debt instead of one that takes time away from their academics, negatively impacts their grades or elevates stress.

Mendez personally knows people who have dropped out of school to pursue Youtubing full-time, but she thinks that’s a risky move.

“In my case, [YouTube] is not the most stable job,” she said. “It’s meant for people to express themselves and their interests.”

The goal of a non-traditional job should be to support you on your path to graduation, not to keep you from achieving your academic goals. Getting your college degree should always be the priority.



The opinions presented within this page do not represent the views of FIU Student Media Editorial Board. These views are separate from editorials and reflect individual perspectives of contributing writers and/or members of the University community.


Image retrieved from Flickr.

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