Jobs provide students with several important opportunities and life long skills. A part-time job in high school may provide other benefits, yet they present some challenges to students.
I’ve been working a little over four months now at a fast food chain. I can say working has been unlike anything I have experienced before. I can now speak to the pros and cons of having a job in high school.
The obvious benefit to a job in high school is earning money. This includes money for some extra spending and being able to take responsibility for some of the costs to parents/guardians such as for clothes, music/subscription services, or phone bills. Additionally, it helps students learn money management and the value of money prior to adulthood.
2. Con-Not enough money
Having a job is great, but you may not get paid your desired amount, and sometimes it seems that the paycheck doesn’t match the energy expense (especially true when standing on the receiving end of an angry customer). This is true of most entry-level jobs.
At my job, I make eight dollars an hour. To some people this might be a lot of money to others it is not. This is pre-taxed money, and the final paycheck will not be 100% of what was earned (but doing spring taxes allows students to accrue much of this back).
On the upside, many of these jobs allows for upward growth meaning the longer you work at that location, the more opportunities you have for higher paid positions, raises, and promotions to management, and future employers can admire a long work history at one location rather than someone without experience or bouncing from job to job–so stick with it!
Although some employers may not pay as much as it seems is deserved, keep in mind that they may offer scholarships for college including the following employers: UPS, Starbucks, Publix, Chic Fil A, Wal-Mart, McDonalds, Chipotle, Home Depot, Lowes, and CVS.
For another source with more information on scholarships, click here.
3. Pro- Experience
Experience, whether through a job or consistent volunteer work, is a big pro, and it’s something irreplaceable. It is what the majority of jobs require you to have before applying. A bonus to having experience is it will gave you skills needed for other jobs including time management, prioritizing heavy responsibilities, communication, and teamwork. No school project or chores can do quite the same. Don’t worry, if high school isn’t the time for a first job, it will come your way soon.
Responsibility is a major factor to consider while applying for a job. Jobs may need you on days you cannot work. For this reason, you need to let your employer ahead of time that you can’t work on those specific days.
In addition to scheduling shifts around practices, homework, and family obligations, there are major responsibilities that can contribute to added stress, such as dealing with large amounts of money, running transactions safely and accurately, storing, handling, or producing products according to strict guidelines, dealing with concerned customers, having to complete trainings or gain safety certifications, and taking on extra duties as needed—and facing any corrections or criticism for mistakes. These are just some of the average job requirements.
If this sounds stressful, consider the previously mentioned benefits. The amount of experience of learning to balance and effectively handle these responsibilities builds a new level of confidence and equips you with new skills you may not have had before.
5. Pro-jobs provide you with something to do
Whether you’re a couch potato or active person, you have to admit sometimes you get bored. Once you have binged every show on Netflix or
finished your swimming season you may need something to do. A job would be just the thing for you to stay productive.
Jobs also provide a chance to meet new people who may help you find new hobbies outside of work or school.
These are all important things to consider when applying for a job. Whether you choose to apply or wait, make sure you know all the important aspects that go into a job. And good luck with your job ventures!