Work-study may sound like the union of two unpopular words, but if it’s part of your financial aid package, count yourself among the lucky ones.

It’s a campus job with a paycheck—although a job is not guaranteed. Securing it and keeping it are your responsibilities.

One thing to know ahead of time is that federal work-study jobs are not always limited to campus jobs. Depending on what you are looking for, there is a wide variety of work-study jobs available from clerical work to teaching assistance to positions at local nonprofits and public interest agencies. Finding a job that can offer hands-on experience and professional development can help enhance your college experience and add to your résumé.

So before you apply for the first work-study job posting you see, dig a little deeper into your school’s offerings. You could find a very cool opportunity to explore an interest, gain real-world experience and have fun at work. Here are some examples of what is out there.

1. Sports Announcer

Dream of becoming a sports broadcaster? At Capital University in Bexley, Ohio, you can take the first step as an athletics event broadcaster. In the job, you’ll offer play-by-play commentary for school games, which include soccer, basketball, lacrosse, baseball, softball, and volleyball, and you’ll get to do pre- and post-game interviews.

2. News Reporter

At Columbia University and Barnard College, both in New York City, students can be paid to work for the Columbia Daily Spectator, a student-run news organization that’s independent from the schools. If you aren’t interested in writing, there are also work-study jobs in social media, design, photography, videography, product development, coding, data analysis, and more.

3. Cat Caretaker

If you’ll be leaving a feline friend at home come fall, you might be able to get your furry fix while being paid. Arcadia University in Glenside, Pennsylvania, provides a list of nonprofits approved for work-study that includes Forgotten Cats, a shelter that cares for feral cats until they are adopted. While the job does entail cleaning cages, it also offers the ultimate reward of “socializing with cats.” For cat lovers, there’s no finer way to get paid.

4. Event Photographer

If your idea of the perfect date to a party is a camera, then being an event photographer could be the beginning of a great relationship. Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts in New York City hires student photographers to attend events year-round as well as edit and archive photos afterward.

5. Intramural Referee

If you’re into sports, always follow the rules and feel empowered by blowing a whistle, you may just find your true calling as a referee for intramural sports. At the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, you can be an intramural sports official, which means you get to communicate sports rules to teams and enforce game rules during the game. It’s a great way to be involved with sports if you can’t commit to a team’s rigorous practice schedule.

Don’t see a job you’re interested in? This is just a small sample of what’s out there. Start your search early and explore all options. Who knows? Your work-study just might be a launching pad for your career.

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