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EDITORIAL: Why all high school students should have jobs

FILE- This Sept. 6, 2017, file photo shows a tip jar with one dollar and five dollar bills and a penny in New York. The past week’s stomach-churning stock market losses and violent bouts of volatility was ignited by a sudden and contagious fear of surging inflation and higher interest rates. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

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FILE- This Sept. 6, 2017, file photo shows a tip jar with one dollar and five dollar bills and a penny in New York. The past week’s stomach-churning stock market losses and violent bouts of volatility was ignited by a sudden and contagious fear of surging inflation and higher interest rates. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

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In the U.S, around 1 in 4 high schoolers ages 16 and older have a job. Many of these jobs are part-time and pay minimum wage which is $7.25 in Pennsylvania. Even though many high schoolers work outside of school and do all of their activities, there is still a big number that do not have jobs.

Working in high school is something every teenager should do. I know we are at school for around 7 hours a day, and then almost all of us play sports, are involved in theatre or music, or are in some type of after-school activity. I get it, most of us have pretty much no free time whatsoever, and I get that when we do have free time, we just want to relax and hang out with our friends. Trust me I get it, I really do, but I also think some of that free time should be used up by having a job.  

Some students work to help support their families, and some work to have their own money to save for the future. One thing is for sure though, you learn A LOT from having a job in high school.  

A vast majority of these part-time jobs involve working with people. Whether you work as a server in a restaurant, retail, or with kids, you never know what to expect. People are always full of surprises. Most of the time, these surprises are not too nice.

When people are being waited on, they have no patience whatsoever. They turn into crazed animals who haven’t eaten in weeks. As soon as they ask you to do something for them, they expect you to finish that task in a split second. Oh, and don’t forget about what happens when you can’t finish that task. Usually when you can’t find something in the back of the store or the restaurant is out of that specific item, once the news is delivered to the customer, it is usually followed by an aggressive eye roll and sassy comment.

Even though you really want to yell at that person for their unnecessary eye-roll, that simple act of agitation can teach you a lot. First off it teaches patience. Patience is a key skill to have in life with your annoying siblings, flaky partners in your college presentations and lazy co-workers. Having patience allows you how to work better with others and come up with different solutions to help solve your problems.

Another reason high schoolers should have a job is that it teaches responsibility. Most of us are a year or two away from living in a completely new place. It is going to be up to ourselves to get up on time and make it to class, so you can start getting used to that by getting a job. When you have a job, you are responsible for getting there on time. If you show up late over and over again, you most likely are going to get fired… and no one wants to tell that story when people ask why you are no longer working.  

Money management. A task young adults struggle with tremendously. I know for a fact, anytime I used to get money for a birthday or holiday, that feeling of finally being rich would not last long. I usually would end up saving that money for about a month, then go shopping and spend it all on clothes I really didn’t need. When you have a job, you are getting the money you earned. You didn’t work all those hours to drain your bank account as soon as it is filled. When making your own money, you learn the value of money, which helps you save it to use in the long run. Knowing the value of money goes a long way and will help prepare you for your future when most of your money is spent on bills.

Yes, having a job in high school can add to the extremely high amount of stress many of us teenagers already have, but it is necessary for a successful future. When applying for jobs after college, you are going to look back and be thankful you worked your tail off in high school. You never know, that extra job on your resume could help you start your future.

 

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EDITORIAL: Why all high school students should have jobs