It is no longer news, education, especially in public higher education, is not a priority in Nigeria. Nigeria’s government seems not to bother. In actual fact the deplorable state of education right from the basic level in the country left nothing to desire. Private education institutions are springing up like flood water. The quality of some of these also is also a major concern especially at the basic and high school level where school owners deliberately ensure every student come out in ‘flying colour’ so as to justify the huge investment in terms of fees charge.
In Nigeria, students in public higher institutions had been on forced holiday for nothing less than 15 months between 2020 till date. According to Daily Trust captured by Allafrica.com, Academic staff Union of Nigeria Universities strike continue to be a source of delay to students’ ‘progress. The hope of potentials students, and these are in Millions, who wish to go in for their degree courses are now hanging in the balance too.
Those who are already in the system are confused and many are having mental health issue. The strike is also affecting parents . According to The Cable the perennial strikes have become counterproductive to every stakeholder.
In its own opinion, Nigerian Tribune affirms the boredom is creating a high level of mental health issues in both the students and their parents.
With the challenges pose and there seems to be no end in view, here are some ways undergraduate students, youth can engage their time and become productive through side hustle.
1 Website and app development: for those who are passionate and had learned a lot along this lane, it is time to commercial this skill. There is every day demand for this and it is a matter of who you know. Several small scale enterprises need this in its daily operation.
2, Digital and content marketing: The age we are today is opening opportunities. Everyone and small organization desire to tell their stories. Content marketing is a great channel and those who have this skill will always be in demand.
3. Make-up: No matter how bad the economy is, people, especially Nigerians, will continue to hold parties. People want to look good no matter what they are passing through. If you know how, small charges of between five hundred and a thousand Naira will be easy for many to give away in every event. Twenty people per weekend will amount to something meaningful at the end of the month.
4. Sell on e-commerce sites: There are several e-commerce sites in Nigeria. At least two are prominent. If you join as sales associates, this is without a cost, you can generate over a hundred thousand as diligent sales associate.
5.Mobile car wash: if you reside in urban cities, people have cars. Some need helps with this service. You can do home service. Through this you would have taken the burden of having to go to a car wash centre from the car owners.
6.Home service hair-cuts and weaving: For those with these skills, people will need to cut their hairs at intervals. Some do every week. some do theirs every two weeks. For females, weaving and braiding are done monthly or a few weeks above. But the good news is that it is costlier depending on weave on to be used. This is another great source of income.
7, Offer virtual trainings: for those who have any of the above skills, there are hundreds of other youth around that may want to learn these. Organize virtual training with minimal charges for an hour or two. Small amount of money here and there will add up to be a big one.
8. Poster and leaflet creation/graphic design: Many organizations, small and medium, are now involved in several promotions and campaigns. If you have this skill and you advertise it, there will always be constant flow of income.
The cost of printing is cut throat now. So many will rather do soft copy and use it online than do printed copies. Even with corporate and family events, billboards no longer offer great appeal because of the costs involved. Depending on who you are doing this for, you can make a living from selling this skill.
9.Brokerage and freelancing: Many people are looking for some items but too busy. Search for what people want to buy, look for major suppliers of such items and connect the two. Put a little commission on this.
Freelancing in few instances can also generate small income. Depending on what you are doing. In some instances, it may give you exposure and right connection. Do not overlook this.
10. Mobile dry cleaning service: We know some will not want to do this as it may seem demeaning. But if you do not mind, offer mobile dry cleaning service. Many in high profile estates will not mind if you are introduced by people they trust because of security reasons. Some of these people have washing machine, it is just the time, so take advantage of this.
11. Social media coaching for adult: It may interest you that some adults still do not know head from tail when it comes to social media use. If you do your research, you may find some who will be willing to pay you either through physical or virtual training.
12. Home lesson/pupil coaching: As an undergraduate, you are expected to know more in the area of your study than an average basic, senior basic students. There are parents who need home teachers for their wards in different subjects. This is an opportunity to make money.
13. Organize boot/holiday camp: We are in holiday season in Nigeria. Are there special skills you know: computer, programming, game development, singing, music, cooking etc A week boot camp at an affordable price around your areas will give you some doughs
14. Cake making: Do you know how to make cake? If your price is very moderate and affordable, there is always a market. Someone want to do small birthday, organizations want to mark anniversary etc. These are opportunities.
15. Youtuber/Podcasting: if you have a platform and very good at it, you can share lessons daily or weekly. If you have enough traffic to justify ads, that is a great pipeline of opportunity for you. You will be shocked what people will be willing to pay for. Just share little knowledge you have or anything of value.
16. Moving Assistant: People move things. They move from one house to another. But if you do not know of a direct contact, look for logistic company to join or create one if you have the resources or contact. You do not have to start in a mega way, start small.
The above list is not exhaustive. What is important is to have a personal success drive. This will rest on a good Personal Success Equation(PSE). Sharon Lechert says PSE is calculated this way: (P +T) x A x A) + Faith which means (Passion + Talent) x Association x Action) + Faith.
All the best and we hope you will become productive and escape the mental health issue lane