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Top 15 Part Time Job Opportunities for College Students

Sure, between your studies and your internships and your extracurricular activities, you already have a full plate -- but whether you're paying your way through school or just need some extra beer-and-burrito cash, a part-time job with decent wages and a flexible schedule is a necessity for most college students. Most companies can manage that much, but some go above and beyond when it comes to giving back to their employees or just plain keeping things fun and interesting. Here, we have compiled a list of some of these titans of industry:

1.In-N-Out Burger

bestparttimejobsinoutburger

California natives already know In-N-Out as the best burger in the west, and the reputation is slowly (very slowly) spreading across the southwest. But how many know that In-N-Out is also one of the best employers this side of the Rockies?

The Inside Scoop

In-N-Out owner Rich Snyder's approach to employees is different from most fast food purveyors: why let good people move on when you can use them to help your company grow?" In-N-Out offers flexible hours and some of the highest starting part-time wages in the country, and all on top of the benefits of working for a company that treats its employees the way it would like to be treated: like family.

2.Barnes and Noble

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Since 1917, when its flagship store was opened in New York City, Barnes and Noble has grown to become the largest book retailer in the United States, with almost 800 locations nationwide.

The Inside Scoop

A quiet and relaxed place to work, you say? Benefits for part-time employees, you say? A bountiful 30% employee discount on movie and books (and that includes textbooks), you say? Paid sick days and reimbursement for transit costs, you say? It might sound like a dream come true, but in fact it's just a job at Barnes & Noble. Sign us up!

3.Wegmans

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Wegmans is a Rochester-based grocery store with European open market aspirations. Family-owned since 1916, it believes in simple values like good people, healthy products, strong customer service, and accomplishing your goals.

The Inside Scoop

Wegmans is a grocery store that cares about its employees, especially their health. From free yoga classes and subsidized gym memberships to discounts on food to make sure you're eating right-to say nothing of health benefits for part-time employees-there's a reason Wegmans has never left the top of Fortune magazine's yearly "Top 100 Best Companies to Work For" round-up.

4.Starbucks

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Since its humble Seattle beginnings in 1971, Starbucks has been at the forefront of the United States' coffee revolution, putting a store on nearly every street corner and Italian coffee staples into the vocabulary of mainstream America.

The Inside Scoop

Shifts are flexible, and the hours people need their coffee (read: the crack of dawn 'til late night) means that you can get in a day of work regardless of your class schedule. Fit twenty hours of work into your week, and you can start on medical and dental benefits within three months. Not enough? How about a 30% discount and a free pound of coffee or box of tea every week to keep you focused as you ride out your classes?

5.Apple Store

bestparttimejobsapple

Apple: the other computer provider. Once considered nothing more than a classroom computer for navigating the Oregon Trail, Apple has moved into trailblazer status with its sleek design and innovation for peripheries like the iconic iPod.

The Inside Scoop

A job at the Apple Genius Bar may be just the thing for a techie with a gift for conversation. For one thing, you get the opportunity to share your technological knowledge with all manner of customer (reason enough to work here for almost every Apple aficionado we know). Secondly, even Apple's non-executive employees are privy to the perks of innovation-from bonuses to free early-adopter merchandise, a job at an Apple store can be tasty indeed.

6.Ritz Camera

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Coming to you from malls across the country, specialty shop Ritz Camera is in a class above your average one-hour photo.

The Inside Scoop

Photography majors, take special note. Not only does Ritz offer sales incentives beyond the usual part-time wages (nothing like bonuses and commissions to sweeten the deal!), but the job offers access to hands-on training, a solid learning environment, and a place to develop your craft among a supportive staff that most likely shares your interest.

7.American Apparel

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Made sweatshop-free in Downtown LA, over the past few years American Apparel's garments have become the calling card of hipster kids across the country.

The Inside Scoop

If you have a flair for the latest fashion, American Apparel is a great choice. The stores are bright and fun, with an unbeatable laid-back atmosphere and a great soundtrack (it may sound petty, but the elevator muzak of some shops will break you down sooner than you think). Merchandise discounts are par for the course, but American Apparel realizes that it can be hard affording a representative wardrobe when you've just started -- which is why they also offer straight-up free clothing for new employees. Bonus!

8.Ikea

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Everyone's favorite Swedish furniture superstore, IKEA brings D.I.Y. ethics home to the masses with its stylish (and inexpensive) ready-to-assemble designs.

The Inside Scoop

IKEA may leave assembly to the customers, but one place they never cut corners is with their employees. The stores offer a relaxed and friendly environment to work in, but the most important thing they offer is health care: the minute employees start working 20 hours or more a week, they are eligible for benefits. Another perk: depending on the hours you keep, even a part-timer can build up to a paid vacation.

9.Whole Foods

bestparttimejobswholefoods

Whole Foods Market is a grocer that takes food seriously. Frequently featured on hit show Top Chef as the market of choice, Whole Foods is the world's largest natural and organic food retailer. What we do know is that it sells (and serves up in the deli sections) some amazingly tasty food.

The Inside Scoop

With its emphasis on organics and unprocessed ingredients, Whole Foods is all about health, and it takes its commitment to employee health just as seriously. After 400 hours of service (that's around twenty weeks on a part-time schedule) eligibility for health benefits kicks in, but wait: after 800 service hours, the company picks up 100% of your health-care premiums. Other perks include paid time off and a 20% discount on groceries so you can eat like a king... or at least like a top chef in training.

10.Lowes

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Since 1946, Lowe's has been dedicated to providing great home improvement supplies and a great atmosphere for its employees.

The Inside Scoop

Most companies only offer health care to part-time employees after a certain amount of worked hours and with a certain quota per week... if they even offer health care to part-time employees at all. That's not the case with Lowe's: the hardware superstore offers immediate benefits for all part-time employees regardless of hours worked per week. With perks like that, paid time off and highly flexible schedules are just icing on the cake.

11.REI

bestparttimejobsrei

Recreational Equipment Incorporated, better known as REI, specializes in... you guessed it, recreational equipment! From all-terrain apparel to camping and hiking gear, REI has everything you need for an outstanding outdoor adventure.

The Inside Scoop

For the more outdoorsy type, REI is a fantastic place to work. For part-time and even seasonal employees, benefits come standard after 30 days of work, with the costs offset 60% by the company. As if that weren't enough, a whopping 50% discount on REI brand merchandise and 30% discount on trips planned through REI's travel company, you'll have the time and cash to do some outdoor adventuring of your own.

12.Trader Joes

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A phenomenon well known to many a college student, Trader Joe's market brings exotic foods from around the world to your kitchen at extremely affordable prices. (Not to mention the classic Two-Buck Chuck.)

The Inside Scoop

Trader Joe's is about as laid back as you can get for a supermarket, and its supervisors want to pass that cool demeanor on to its employees -- all those fun Hawaiian shirts come free with the territory! Of course, nothing is quite as relaxing as knowing that your health care is covered, and Trader Joes has even its part-time employees' backs.

13.Nordstrom

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Founded in Seattle in 1901, originally a shoe store built by a farmer and prospector who struck gold on the Yukon, Nordstrom by now has grown into the wildly popular upscale department store that we know today.

The Inside Scoop

Despite a changing economical climate over the past couple years, Nordstrom has resisted layoffs -- always a good sign. In addition to offering health care benefits to part-time workers, Nordstrom goes a step farther with perks like subsidized gym memberships, to make sure their employees are in the best shape possible.

14.Lands End

bestparttimejobslandsend

Lands' End is a Wisconsin-based clothing retailer that focuses on casual comfort and warmth for the great outdoors. Though mostly a mail-order company, Lands' End does have several stores overseas and in the upper Midwest -- and that's where you come in.

The Inside Scoop

The emphasis at Lands' End is on fun: employees (even part-time employees) get access to a company-owned recreation center, great discounts on theme parks and movies, and a standing invitation to the yearly company picnic. It's all so exciting; you might not even notice you're also being offered health benefits and (should this turn into more than a summer job) retirement plans.

15.Cost Plus World Markets

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Cost Plus was founded simply as a furniture-import warehouse on Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco, in 1958. Since then it has come to be known as a market for a wide variety of imports, from furniture and dishware to exotic food and wine.

The Inside Scoop

With the amounts of interesting items for sale, a job at Cost Plus is almost worth it for the in-store discounts alone. That said, Cost Plus goes above and beyond with medical benefits, life insurance, and 401(K) options, not to mention and equally flexible vacations. extremely flexible hours

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