10 Highest Paying Part-time Jobs for Students in USA 2024

Expat life
08 Jan 2024
12 mins read
Written by pranit

Studying abroad is a global phenomenon; it is not just limited to a particular country or culture. Students across the globe are ready to cross countries, continents and oceans to secure the best possible education. And when we speak about study abroad options, the United States of America (USA) is undoubtedly one of the top countries on our minds. Every student has a reason to choose the USA to pursue their higher education. Some may link it to a high-quality education system. Others may consider it for its generous post-study work options, and some may want to explore the varied cultural diversity it offers. Whatever the reason, the USA is a preferred destination for international students. Moreover, students can opt for part-time jobs in the USA while pursuing education.

Some important statistics at a glance:

  • According to the 2022 SEVIS by the Numbers Report released by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP), the total number of F-1 and M-1 international student records increased by 125,409 (+10.1 percent).
  • The same report also states that international students in the United States hailed from 227 countries and pursued 1,486 varied primary majors during the same period.
  • China, India, and the Republic of Korea (South Korea) are the countries with the largest number of international student records in the United States in 2022.
  • As per the 2022 OPEN DOORS® report, there were 9,48,519 international students in the USA during 2021-2022.

Getting a Part-Time Job in the USA as an International Student

If your enrollment in a US university is accepted, you can pursue your education after you obtain a student visa. International students can apply for F-1 or M-1 visa to pursue education there. However, M-1 visas are reserved for students enrolling in vocational or other recognized non-academic institutions and do not allow them to work while studying.

F-1 visa students can work part-time up to 20 hours a week while school is in session and full-time during breaks under certain conditions and regulations issued by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS).

Part-Time Job Rules for International Students in the USA

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has laid down a few part-time job rules for international students.

  • F-1 students can only work on-campus during their first academic year, and from the second year onwards, they can work either on-campus or off-campus. They can work off-campus only under special situations like severe economic hardships or emergent circumstances.
  • Students can engage in three off-campus jobs and must obtain necessary work authorization.
  • Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
  • Optional Practical Training (OPT)
  • Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Optional Practical Training Extension (OPT)
  • Students must adhere to the strict immigration regulations and can work on-campus up to 20 hours a week during term time and up to 40 hours per week during break periods.
  • Social Security number (SSN) is a requirement to get jobs in the USA. You can apply for an SSN only if you have a job offer, and the employer can only pay you once you have your SSN.

 

Must Read: Cost of living in the USA

10 Highest-Paying Part-time Jobs in the USA for International Students

According to the US Department of Labor, the federal minimum wage for part-time jobs for students in the USA is $7.25 per hour. However, the minimum wages differ from one state to another.

Let us look at some of the best part-time jobs in the USA for students. The below list combines both on-campus and off-campus jobs.

Type of Job

Average Per-Hour Salary in USA for Students

Tutor or Peer Mentor

$23.94

Research Assistant

$19.88

Department Assistant

$18.44

Sales Assistant

$17.35

Call Centre Representative

$16.74

Library Assistant

$16.43

Receptionist

$15.48

Student Ambassador

$14.92

Barista

$14.02

Food Runner or Catering Assistant

$13.92

Source: Indeed

1. Tutor or Peer Mentor

Job Details

If you are good in academics and are interested in helping your peers and juniors learn, tutoring may be an option for you. Most universities have an education resource centre, which allows you to apply for these positions formally.

Expected Salary Bracket

Considered the highest-paying part-time job in the USA for international students, tutors or peer mentors can earn around  $23.94 per hour.

Eligibility

Students with good knowledge of the subject, communication and problem-solving skills are generally preferred.

2. Research Assistant

Job Details

The job of a research assistant is to collect and organize data and assist the professors or scientists in the university. Students aiming for PhD or other academic-related careers can opt for this job.

Expected Salary Bracket

A research assistant is one of the best part-time jobs in the USA as, along with excellent experience and exposure, it also offers good pay. On average, their per-hour salary in the USA is around $19.88.

Eligibility

Possessing critical thinking skills, attention to detail, and solid organizational skills can help you become a good student research assistant.

3. Department Assistant

Job Details

A department assistant is involved in a regular administrative job related to a particular university department. They must assist the professors, manage front desk job responsibilities, help in conducting department events, etc.

Expected Salary Bracket

The average per-hour salary in the USA for students working as department assistants is $18.44.

Eligibility

There is no specific requirement for the job, but good communication and organization skills always help.

4. Sales Assistant

Job Details

A sales assistant is one of the most popular part-time jobs in the USA among students. As a sales assistant, you are responsible for increasing the store’s sales by guiding customers for what they are looking for, handling queries, processing transactions, etc.

Expected Salary Bracket

In the USA, a part-time job salary for a sales assistant is approximately $17.35 per hour.

Eligibility

Typically, on-the-job training is provided for students selected for this role. Having good communication skills and computer proficiency can help you secure this job.

5. Call Centre Representative

Job Details

As a call service representative, you are required to handle customer enquiries and complaints, educate customers about different products, take orders, resolve issues, help them with complex procedures, etc. It is one of the most sought-after part-time jobs in the USA by international students.

Expected Salary Bracket

Students working as call centre representatives in the USA typically earn around $16.74 per hour.

Eligibility

Students with good communication skills, command over the language and problem-solving skills are preferred for this role. Knowing different languages may also be helpful in many scenarios.

6. Library Assistant

Job Details

When it comes to on-campus jobs, library assistants are among the most popular ones. Their main role involves supervising the library, organising books on the correct shelves, keeping them in order and assisting students in finding relevant books and resource materials.

Expected Salary Bracket

A library assistant earns around $16.43 per hour as a part-time job salary in the USA.

Eligibility

There are no specific eligibility criteria to get this job.

7. Receptionist

Job Details

A receptionist undertakes front-desk administrative duties of any organization, institution, recreation centre, etc. Their main task involves answering phone calls and redirecting them to the concerned person or department, welcoming guests and performing paperwork and other operation duties.

Expected Salary Bracket

The per-hour salary in the USA for students opting for the receptionist role is $15.48.

Eligibility

There are no specific eligibility criteria to get this job.

8. Student Ambassador

Job Details

As a student ambassador, you are required to provide information about your college or university to prospective students and parents. As the name suggests, student ambassadors are representatives who promote their university by conducting guided tours, presentations, etc.

Expected Salary Bracket

In the USA, the part-time job salary for a student ambassador is around $14.92 per hour.

Eligibility

Students with excellent interpersonal skills, leadership qualities, communication skills and a strong university or college knowledge are considered for this role.

9. Barista

Job Details

A barista role offers a good part-time job salary in the USA for international students. They help take and process customer orders, prepare beverages, ensure the equipment functions properly, and perform related tasks. They are considered one of the best part-time jobs in the USA as they are easily available and offer a chance to earn additional tips.

Expected Salary Bracket

The average part-time salary in the USA for a barista role is $14.02 per hour.

Eligibility

Although training is provided for this role, it depends a lot on their skills and abilities to prepare and serve coffee.

10. Food Runner or Catering Assistant

Job Details

Food runners are like servers at a restaurant who take orders from the customers and pass them to the employees in the kitchen. A catering assistant assists the chief in the kitchen in preparing orders.

Expected Salary Bracket

The average part-time salary in the USA for these roles is $13.92 per hour.

Eligibility

There is no specific eligibility requirement for this role.

Part-Time Job in USA – City Wise

Let us look at the top five jobs and their part-time salary in popular cities in the USA. The cities are selected as the preferred study destination for students.

Student average salary in USA – Citywise

Student average salary in USA - Citywise

Boston

Top 5 Jobs

Average Pay Per Hour

Library Assistant

$22-$27

Store Stocker/ Cashier

$19.50

Customer Service Agent

$19

Package Handler

$18-$19

Retail Assistant

$16

Chicago

Top 5 Jobs

Average Pay Per Hour

Cleaner/ Maintenance Staff

$23

Store Associate

$20-$30

Package Handler

$21

Store Stocker/ Cashier

$18.50

Retail Assistant

$15-$19

San Francisco

Top 5 Jobs

Average Pay Per Hour

Babysitter

$28-$32

Front Office Agent

$25

Package Handler

$22

Customer Service Representative

$20.70

Barista

$16

New York

Top 5 Jobs

Average Pay Per Hour

Client Advisor

$22-$24

Store Associate

$20-$25

Server

$20

Tutor

$18-$22

Cleaning Crew

$16

Los Angeles

Top 5 Jobs

Average Pay Per Hour

Retail Assistant

$25

Dog Walker/ Pet Sitter

$20

Package Handler

$19

Customer Service Agent

$18.50

Store Stocker/ Cashier

$18

Benefits of Part-Time Jobs in the USA

A part-time job in the USA offers international students more than just financial support. Let’s have a look at some of its key benefits:

  • Explore various career opportunities and alternatives
  • Experience work culture and strengthen your work ethics
  • Develop useful skills
  • Create networking opportunities
  • It makes you responsible and independent
  • Boost your resume
  • Reduce your college debt
  • Get a steady flow of income

 

Must Read: Average house price in the USA

Types of Part-time Jobs in the USA for International Students

Broadly, international students can apply for part-time jobs in the USA under the following:

  • On-campus: This category does not require USCIS approval, and students can start working from the first academic year.
  • Off-campus: Part-time job rules for off-campus jobs for international students are relatively stricter and require approval from the USCIS. This type is further divided into the following:
  • Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
  • Optional Practical Training (OPT) (pre-completion or post-completion)
  • Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Optional Practical Training Extension (OPT)
  • Under special cases such as severe economic hardships or emergent circumstances.

How to Find Part-Time Jobs in the USA for International Students?

Finding the right part-time jobs in the USA for international students can be challenging. Here are some tried and tested ways to help get going.

  • University’s career service office: Your university’s career service department is one of the best ways to start your search for a part-time job. Some universities may also have a dedicated section on the website to post employment opportunities. Additionally, various departments in the university may provide information on upcoming vacancies in their department.
  • Student communities: Student groups can help you know about the latest open vacancies for part-time jobs.
  • Networking: Staying connected with your peers, seniors, and faculty members can open a host of opportunities for you.
  • Online platforms: Online job portals are the most widely used channel for part-time job opportunities. Popular job portals include Indeed, Upwork, Glassdoor, Snagajob, etc.

 

Must Read: U.S. Citizenship for Indians

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can students work part-time in the USA?

Yes, students can work part-time in the USA for up to 20 hours a week during term and full-time during breaks, subject to certain regulations.

  • How much do part-time jobs pay in the USA?

Part-time job salaries in the USA vary depending on the type of job, location, skill set, etc. However, the average per-hour salary for students in the USA is $15 or $31,200 annually.

  • Which part-time jobs pay the most in the USA?

Tutor, research assistant and department assistant are among the highest-paying part-time jobs in the USA.

  • Is it easy to get a part-time job in the USA?

The USA offers ample opportunities for students to work part-time while pursuing education. Students can easily find jobs through on-campus routes or online portals.

  • Can I work 50 hours a week in the USA?

Full-time adult employees can work 50 hours a week in the USA as there is no limit to the number of hours one can work. Overtime pay in private and public sectors is applicable, which is dictated by the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Before you go…

The USA has always been one of the top countries for international study destinations. With an ever-growing economy offering ample work opportunities, a multicultural society, and a world-class education, students across the globe flock to this country. However, the high cost of living encourages most of them to opt for part-time jobs in the USA. Once you get settled in the job, you might want to send money from the USA to your loved ones. Thus, knowing a trusted and reputed money transfer platform is crucial.

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Disclaimer: This article is intended for informational purposes only. All details are accurate at the time of publishing. Instarem has no affiliation or relationship with products or vendors mentioned.

Other related blogs:

Canada – Part-time jobs for students in Canada

Australia – Part-time jobs for students in Australia

UK – Part-time jobs for students in UK

Singapore – Part-time jobs for students in Singapore

Germany – Part-time jobs for students in Germany

Ireland – Part-time jobs for students in Ireland

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