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The Double-Dipper’s Guide to Student Exploitation

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Becky Sickles
Student, Dermalogica Academy  

Decorator
Parsons The New School for Design
212-229-8940; newschool.edu
Upgrading your apartment from collegiate Ikea to grown-up I-can’t-believe-it’s-Ikea requires a good eye and a lot of time you likely don’t have.For better or worse, Parsons interior-design students won’t be constantly hovering over you like a full-time designer would be. (They do have to go to class sometimes.) But for a chance to beef up their portfolios, they’re eager to take on small jobs, like jazzing up your studio at a much, much lower rate than full-timers charge. Post a detailed ad on Parsons’ job board, offering about $25 an hour and going up if you don’t get any bites. Regardless, it shouldn’t be hard to stay under the $100-to-$200-per-hour range of a design-firm professional. Savings: 75 to 85 percent *

Party Musician
Manhattan School of Music
917-493-4486; msmnyc.edu
They’re more expensive than your iTunes, granted, but real musicians make for classier parties. Hire undergrad and grad students from Manhattan School of Music to play whatever instrument (piano, violin, guitar, acapella) and genre (classical, jazz, nineties rock, doo-wop) you’re angling for. The conservatory’s Center for Music Entrepreneurship will initially set you up with a performer or group, then you can negotiate directly. Expect to spend about $150 to $200 per hour per musician, a deal compared with the $1,000 per hour ­many professional players charge. Savings: 85 percent

Website Designer
School of Visual Arts
212-592-2370; sva.edu
If you’re building a website for a side business or just want a place to house your résumé online, you can waste a lot of time trying to design it yourself or, better, hire someone who knows more about graphic design than you do. Of course, graphic-design students’ portfolios won’t be as extensive as a top-flight studio’s, but most students from the School of Visual Arts can, when given examples, handle something clean and simple. A novice designer found through the school’s Office of Career Development board will probably sign up for under $20 an hour, which means a simple website taking 30 hours of coding could be $600 start-to-finish. Savings: 40 percent

Pilates Instructors
Core Pilates
99 University Pl., at 12th St.; 212-260-5464
In addition to the instructor’s expertise, the expensive equipment is what you’re paying so heftily for at private Pilates sessions. At Core Pilates, though, you can spend an hour on those miracle machines under the direction of an apprentice for $40—half the price of an on-staff guru. By the time the apprentice instructors accept clients, they’re nearing the end of their six-month training course, so they’ve presumably mastered all the basics. The catch: It’s only available midday on weekdays. Savings: 56 percent


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