The Struggle of Working in High School

By Allison Miller

Sometimes the issue of working as a teenager is not an issue of laziness, though parents may believe otherwise. In reality, many teens are waiting to get their hands on a job of their own. The promise of being able to make one’s own money to hang out with friends or to spend on things one wants to buy can be extremely motivating.

Though of course, there are the exceptions of high school kids who would rather do just about anything but get a job, there are many of us who are struggling to find one. So how hard can it be to find a job? It turns out the answer to that is that it can be extremely difficult, especially if a person’s parents do not do all the work for him or her. But what about finding a place to work is so hard to do as a teenager?

One of the biggest problems as a teenager is figuring out how to manage your time. Before even getting into scheduling hours and having to go through the interview process, the giant blockade of time management can turn away many people from even trying to get a job. Juggling homework and extracurricular activities can be hard enough as is without adding a part-time job on top of them. So many young people are not able to find a balance in their lives between school, work, and life, which leads to a wall blocking teens from even looking for a job in the first place.

Though this issue is something that relates more to a lack of explanation, it is still an issue. This turn-away is the fact that many teens have never been taught how to build a resume or deal with the stress of an interview. The majority of teenagers have never even been told how interviews work. Though the work of building a resume is definitely something that pushes away those who do not actually want to work for their job, even those who truly do want to work have to deal with teaching themselves the correct way to make a resume.

One of the major complaints about high school from those attending it is that it doesn’t actually teach us anything we will need in the real world, and in this situation, those protestors are in fact correct. There are very few classes in high school that will teach you how to go through the process of finding a job, making a desirable resume, and the process of an interview.

Another issue is the fact that many businesses do not want to hire high school students. The places that teenagers may truly have skills in likely will not hire them, leaving them to be confined to a retail job more than likely. While it is a job that most people have had to go through, it is one that is highly undesirable for a teenager and could lead to a general disinterest in working.

The biggest issue, however, tends to lie with fear and anxiety. Humans are creatures that live to protect themselves even when a problem is not life or death and teenagers are no exception. The fear of being rejected by anyone, let alone a workplace, is something that lurks in the back of most people’s minds.

Whatever the reason, many teenagers have walls up that pose challenges to joining the workforce. So maybe before a parent judges his or her child as simply being lazy, they should take the time to consider what factors are truly affecting the situation.