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Best High Paying Jobs for High School Students

Here are some of our favorite high-paying jobs you can have as a high school student.

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In recent years, many teens have chosen to not look for part-time jobs because they are so busy improving their resumes for college entrance. Taking advanced courses for college credit while in high school, pursuing leadership positions in clubs, participating in sports teams, and racking up professional certificates in their future career path.

High Paying Jobs for Teens & High School Students

Experts are encouraging teens to slow down some and consider getting a part-time job because this will teach money management skills and teach time management, interpersonal skills, life skills, and work/life balance. The federal minimum wage is $11.00 per hour, and high schoolers aren’t able to work full time, so finding a high-paying job as a teen is key to maximizing your time for the most profit.

Let’s discuss high-paying jobs for teens and high school students!

Delivery Person

This can be done with a vehicle or a bike to make deliveries. Where I live in the city, we have a lot of bike delivery people because this is a greener alternative, and they can avoid the traffic, which delays deliveries and impacts how many deliveries can be made in a shift. Delivery people can make a wage as well as tips from awesome customers!

Restaurant Server

Servers answer questions on menu items, build customer service skills, and learn about the service industry. The hourly wage is low at about $2.15 per hour in most states, with tips supplementing the wage. It’s important to have great customer service skills and work in a restaurant that encourages patrons to tip to make this a high-paying job.

Barista

Baristas make specialty coffee and tea drinks for patrons and learn customer service, order management, and inventory skills. This job is paid wages plus tips, and some restaurants will offer free beverages or food while on shift and the ability to take home unsold food at the end of the night.

Camp Counselor

Spend the entire summer at the camp, guiding youngsters through daily activities and team-building exercises, or work part-time at a day camp. For full-time, sleepaway positions for the entire season, lodging and food are provided, which allows teens to save money by not spending much.

Tutoring

If you have a subject that you excel in and you’re able to teach your skills to others, it’s possible to make between $15 to $20 per hour or more if the subject is in high demand for tutors. The best part is that you can make your own hours and choose who you want to work with.

Offer Lessons

Many high school students have limited time after school, homework, friends, family, and extracurriculars, so offering music or dance lessons in your spare time could be lucrative and you can choose when to schedule students. Even beginner teachers can charge $20 per hour for this service.

Babysitting

Most babysitters can earn between $12 and $15 per hour depending on how many kids you are watching and if you have gotten certified as a babysitter or in First Aid through the Red Cross Association. Teens that a driver’s license and access to a reliable vehicle could charge more for providing rides to and from school or afterschool programs for younger children that you babysit for.

Pet Sitting

Families are starting to take vacations and head out of town to visit family and friends in other areas again, which means there is an increased need for reliable pet sitters that love their animals as much as they do! Other teens use their lunch break from school to go let pets outside or feed and water them, then check on them again after school. This allows you to set your own hours and choose which families you want to work with.

Lifeguard

Certified lifeguards can make between $15 and $18 per hour, and some aquatic centers are willing to pay for your training in exchange for you signing on to work for them after you have completed the training. Experienced lifeguards get paid more, so if this is something that you enjoy doing, consider staying on next summer.

Landscaping

Depending on your availability, you could schedule a few clients on the weekends consistently and make $200 to $300 per client per month by providing mowing, trimming, weed eating, mulching, and weeding services during your free time. This allows you to make your own hours, choose your own clients, and charge your own rates based on what other teens in your area are charging for their services in the same industry.

Personal or Virtual Assistant

Adults are very busy with their lives between juggling kids, work, home, entertainment, yard work, etc. Having an extra set of hands to bring the car in for an oil change, drop off the dry cleaning, or pick up some groceries for dinner would be a huge help! As a virtual assistant, you could work for a business owner sending invoices, filing records, or scheduling appointments with clients. The pay for this is usually up to $15 for entry-level, but can be upwards of $40 per hour with enough experience depending on the tasks assigned.

Social Media Specialist

Every business is trying to bring in as many sales as possible and establish themselves in the marketplace through brand identity, so social media has become a big part of that. Suppose you can make memes or write snappy statements that gain attention and have the availability to schedule posts for businesses consistently or offer assistance with developing a social media strategy. In that case, small businesses are willing to pay at least $15 per hour to inexperienced social media specialists and provide an increase in compensation as your skills improve.

Video Editing

Video content is becoming more and more in demand as platforms like YouTube gain traction, and more people are turning to the online space to learn anything from changing the oil in the car to baking a cake or starting an online business. Editing is a skill that many content creators aren’t good at, so it takes them hours to edit themselves whereas a skilled editor may take minutes for the same task. An experienced editor can make between $20 and $30 per hour and make their own schedule.

Podcast Editor

Many new businesses are trying to brand themselves by starting a podcast but lack the skills to edit sound to produce high-quality content for their audience. If you have the skills to edit podcasts for businesses or new personal brands, this is a lucrative opportunity to earn at least $20 per hour and offers a flexible schedule. Get creative and add music during long pauses or funny noises that add a punch line for listeners!

Content Creator

Create your own blog, podcast, YouTube channel, or Patreon where you can share content that you have created with your audience and build a following of true supporters. It takes time and consistent effort to produce quality content for this type of job to start making money, so many teens start this in their spare time while still pursuing other jobs. Gamers can use platforms like Twitch to live stream their gameplay and great players can gain quite a following. Almost any skill can be showcased online, from personal finance to baking to pet grooming. 

Selling Handmade Items

Marketplaces like Etsy offer artists, digital designers, and handmade crafters the opportunity to reach a larger audience and sell your unique products. The possibilities are pretty endless, from designing digital journals that can be printed by the purchaser to designing jewelry or customized clothing items. Crafters can set their own prices by researching what others in your area of expertise are selling items for. 

Ice Cream Scooper

This fun job is very customer service focused, and teens with great people skills that like interacting with others in a fun environment would really enjoy this job where you take orders, offer flavor samples, and deliver ice cream orders for your customers. This can be a seasonal job during the summer or provided year-round depending on where you live. The pay for this job is usually between $11 and $15 per hour plus tips.

Prep Cook

If you enjoy working in a kitchen and preparing food, this opportunity is perfect and the average national salary per hour is over $12. Prep cooks are assigned tasks of getting raw ingredients ready for the chefs and line cooks, so common duties include chopping vegetables or starting sauces used in dishes later down the line. This is a perfect way to get experience in the foodservice industry if that is a career you are considering.

Movie Theater Staff

Options for jobs as movie theater staff include cashier, usher, food service, and clean up, with the average salary being $12 to $15 per hour, with some patrons offering tips depending on the type of theater you are working in. In my city, we have theaters that serve alcohol and food while you are watching the movie, so this provides teens the opportunity to earn tips like they would as a restaurant server. A perk to this job is employees are offered free tickets or employee discounts.

Front Desk Clerk

Clerks and receptionists are needed in businesses like gyms, doctors’ offices, and car dealerships, so the hours can be flexible to fit your needs for night shifts or weekend work when you’re not in school. Duties include scheduling appointments, greeting customers as they come in, updating customer profiles and records, and taking care of administrative tasks. The pay for this type of job usually falls in the $13 to $15 per hour range depending on experience and shift worked.

Inventory Clerk for Stores

Depending on your age, stocking shelves for grocery stores after hours or conducting inventory reviews on weekends to determine what new inventory needs to be purchased for the store can pay up to $21 per hour. Some distribution centers and warehouses will hire teen workers if they feel they can provide a safe work environment for teen workers and meet the local labor law requirements based on the age of employees. These jobs can require you to stay working on one specific task or assign you to different departments within the store that need help which allows you to learn many different life skills. 

Valet 

This job does require you to have a driver’s license and know how to drive different vehicles. Some vehicles will be automatic, but others will have a manual transmission, and valets need to be able to move vehicles quickly in a professional manner. Most valet positions pay minimum wage plus tips, and car enthusiasts are willing to pay well for special treatment for their vehicle. 

Housekeeping

Hotels, inns, and hospitals are almost always looking for cleaning staff to fill their positions and are willing to hire inexperienced staff. The average salary for this job is $13, and tips are a perk of the position depending on where you work. I always leave the staff at the hotels where I stay at a tip because I appreciate their hard work in making my stay there as comfortable as possible. 

Because teens have limited availability due to the increasing demands on their time from school, extracurricular activities, college courses or advanced high school classes, and active social life, maximizing the time spent working for the highest pay is the goal. All of us want to set ourselves up for success financially, so choosing a job that you enjoy while bringing in the most money for your time is critical. 

Research the different jobs you are interested in to see what the pay is for your area and what hours you would require. Working a job as a teen is a great way to learn time management, how to manage your money and set savings goals, and learn interpersonal skills that will help you as an adult.

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About the Author

Jessica Anglin

Jessica was raised in a household where her parents didn't know how to pay bills on time and indulged in life's pleasures on a consistent basis in order to cover the misery from working jobs they hated for money that wasn't enough to live off of. She took on the role of caregiver to 4 siblings at age 15 and started her first business selling tie-dye t-shirts in order to buy food and provide a stable home. Nineteen years later, she owns three successful businesses, has earned an MBA in Finance, and works daily to set an example for the next generation on how to build wealth so they never face the same struggles.

Last updated on: April 12, 2022