Life is expensive. Life as a high school student is really expensive. You’re in that awkward phase of needing money, but no longer able to just mooch off of the parents. That and wanting a new thing every few minutes with a limited cash flow don’t mix well. Books, games, tickets, food, clothes, computers, cars, etc. and then there’s college looming in the nearing future. For many high school students, getting a job is the only way to fund their extravagancies.
However, being a teenager also limits the places that will offer jobs. With a confining number of hours and restrictions on what you can actually do, attaining a job is tougher than it would seem, but not impossible. And once you’ve found a job, it can be quite fun. Kayla Martinez, a CCHS senior, works as a CYC counselor for the after school program at Saddlewood Elementary. “I want to be a teacher when I grow up so that’s part of the reason why I like [the job]. I get to interact with kids and I think what’s really fun is that while you’re on the job you still get to have fun and you can goof off a little bit. You don’t get yelled at for playing with the kids. I get to talk to them, color with them, if they want to play a game with me I’m allowed to do that.” Martinez says that her favorite part is showing up to work and having the kids want to play games with her, but she has to work three to six every day after school so she doesn’t have a lot of time for homework and dinner.
If working with kids isn’t great, there’s always food. Jen DuPont, also a senior, works at the frozen yogurt shop, Sweet Frog. She likes the freedom of working on her own, but the work can get a little tedious with the repetition of cleaning and cashiering. Courtney Kerin, another senior, works at Macaroni Grill as a hostess and opera singer and says, “I like all the people that I work with but I don’t like when people stare at me when I sing or when I’m alone and people take a long time to take off their coats so a line forms, because even though I’m doing my job correctly, I feel like I’m doing it inadequately.”
And there’s always working as a store clerk or cashier. Senior, Macy Waddingham, a sales clerk at Aeropastale, loves cashiering best about her job. The only thing that bothers her is, “straightening tables that are completely messed up because sometimes when I’m straightening and cleaning up, a customer comes over and destroys the pile that I just fixed.” Senior, Megan Vallee is also a cashier, but at Party City. “I like being a cashier because I like talking to people, but I don’t like cleaning the bathroom.”
Every job has its highs and lows. But if none of these seem appealing, there are other options, even whole websites dedicated to finding jobs for teenagers. Finding a job has its difficulties, but just remembers that this job is a start, not necessarily what you’ll be doing forever.