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Part-Time Jobs, Full-Time Pay

Who says the way to a healthy bank account is putting in overtime? Offering flexible scheduling and hourly pay high enough to yield a full-timer's salary, these jobs could be your ticket to fast cash.


Cameron Parker is perhaps the only recent college grad who isn't worried about a slumping economy. That's because he earns $85,000 a year working 10 to 15 hours a week translating medical documents and a novel under one of his former college professors.

"You don't need a college degree to break into the field, but it helps in terms of networking and getting involved in the translation community," says Parker, who holds a bachelor's degree in French from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia.

While Parker's salary edges on the higher end of the spectrum -- reports that the average hourly wage is $24 -- fluent speakers who specialize in critical needs languages like Chinese, Hindi, Korean, and Arabic can earn more. To break in, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that candidates need fluency in two languages and most hold a bachelor's degree, though not necessarily in a language program.

Massage Therapist

Ready for a career change? Look no further than a massage table.

"Many massage therapists are on their second or third careers, because this offers them so much flexibility," says Nora Brunner, public relations specialist for Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals, a network of 69,000 bodyworkers.

With the industry projected to grow 20 percent between now and 2016, licensed therapists who complete massage school or a community college program usually lasting anywhere from five to nine months of full-time study and pass their state's licensing exam (required in 43 states), are raking in the dough. ABMP reports that massage therapists earn an average of $23 per hour, but Brunner adds that freelancers who work on their own and don't have to fork over a percentage of their fees to hotels or spas earn $65 per hour on average.

Life and Business Coaches

Dedicated to helping clients reach goals ranging from losing weight to organizing their employees, life and business coaches work where they want and when they want, reports the International Coaching Federation (ICF). While there are no licensing requirements necessary to break into the field, ICF reports that more than half of all clients expect their coach to be credentialed through an organization like ICF, the International Coaching Council (ICC), or the Worldwide Association of Business Coaches.

Credentialing requirements vary between organizations and could require anywhere from a few days of in-class training to a couple months of full-time certificate study and on-the-job training. After that new coaches are free to build their client network and their bank accounts -- thanks to a billing rate of $55 per hour, according to

Interior Designer

When "interior designer" pops up in conversation, most think of picking out living room sofas to match the drapes. The job entails much, much more, says Korenna Cline with the American Society of Interior Designers.

"[Designers] could work anywhere, from homes to hospitals to schools," she says. "They also have to work with design plan, building codes, sustainability issues, and creating something that works for people of all ages."

Better yet, Cline adds, they're compensated well. Charging anywhere from $75 to $225 an hour, designers can break into the field with a bachelor's or design degree, while top candidates become nationally certified by passing the National Council for Interior Design Qualification exam.

Graphic Designer

Chad Kouri laughs at the idea of a starving artist. An independent illustrator and visual artist in Chicago, 24-year-old Kouri subsidizes his art through freelance graphic design.

"Graphic design could mean anything from designing a flyer to developing the full look and feel for a company through multiple different mediums, web and print and video," he explains. "The more mediums you know how to work in, and the more you know about Web development, the more opportunities there are."

While a graphic design degree isn't absolutely necessary to break into the profession, one from a two- or four-year institution can be a big career boost, especially for those looking to work within a Web design or advertising agency. According to the American Institute of Graphic Arts, freelance graphic designers earn an average of $29 an hour; however, Kouri says that with experience the rate can quickly jump into the hundreds.

"I have five years of experience, and I charge $50 to $65 an hour," he says. "That's the way I pay the bills."

by Christina Couch,

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