Survey Reveals Impressive Profile of Today’s Babysitters

09/08/2017 02:02 pm ET

We all have fond memories of the babysitters who cared for us when we were young, though those sweet teenagers from around the neighborhood who charged my mom $3 per hour are quite different from the highly qualified sitters available to parents today. Families now pay an average hourly rate of $15 for a babysitter ( and even more for a sitter with special experience and skills—such as a degree in early childhood education or fluency in a second language—so it’s not surprising that babysitting has become a lucrative job that attracts many college students. According to a poll of 400 college student sitters available on UrbanSitter, many of today’s babysitters are well-educated and not only looking to earn a buck, but also gain valuable work experience that often applies to their fields of study. It’s great news for parents looking to hire a sitter who can serve as a positive role model and mentor for impressionable kids!

Here’s what else the study revealed about college babysitters:

They are committed students (a.k.a., solid mentors):

o More than half of the current students polled are pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree, 26% an Associate Degree, and 10% are working toward a Master's Degree.

o 30% boast a GPA of 3.5 or higher and an additional 29% have a GPA of 3.1-3.5.

Sitters polled represent a diverse range of fields of study:

o Primary fields of college study are Education (26%), Nursing/Medicine (23%), Psychology (16%), Business, English/Communications, Math and Science, Political Science and Engineering.

They are already experienced childcare providers in their own right:

o During the school year, 59% babysit part-time, 27% occasionally, and 14% full-time. During the summer, 40% babysit full-time!

o Nearly half regularly babysit for one to two families during the school year and 25% babysit for three to four families in between classes.

Sitters attending college earn an annual average of $1,708 and use their earnings for the following:

o Savings

o Books/School Supplies

o Fun/Activities

o Tuition

o Major purchase (car, home, etc.)

A babysitting job is more than a side hustle:

o 15% of college students polled have landed an interview or job opportunity by networking with a family met through a babysitting job.

o 32% say they have been able to gain experience that is relevant towards their field of study by babysitting.

They bring a level of professionalism to the job. In addition to babysitting, they have worked in various roles, including:

o Retail 30%

o Customer service 27%

o As a Tutor 26%

o As an Intern 26%

While I don’t discount the fun times I had with the sitters my mother hired, it’s reassuring to know that there are well qualified sitters available today who bring a wealth of experience, skill, and mentoring to the time they spend with my kids.

This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.