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Filed under Planning Ahead

It can make or break you. Literally.

Working+in+fast+food+is+a+first+job+for+many+young+people.+It+can+teach+skills+that+can+be+used+later+in+life.+Photograph+by+Reynaldo+Ramon+in+public+doman.
Working in fast food is a first job for many young people. It can teach skills that can be used later in life. Photograph by Reynaldo Ramon in public doman.

Working in fast food is a first job for many young people. It can teach skills that can be used later in life. Photograph by Reynaldo Ramon in public doman.

SSgt. Reynaldo Ramon

SSgt. Reynaldo Ramon

Working in fast food is a first job for many young people. It can teach skills that can be used later in life. Photograph by Reynaldo Ramon in public doman.

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Having a job at a young age is difficult. Time for homework, free time, extra circulars,  and family moments is taken away so that young people can make money. If you have a job, you benefit from it, but to some extent, it can also take a lot away from you.

Freedom at a young age is precious, but it is a privilege. Some students who have parents who have money and want them to succeed in school rather than working. But not all families are so fortunate. Different families have different circumstances. 

Working as a teenager can prepare an individual for adult work. Working in a fast food job or a clothing store can help a person learner customer relation skills. Dealing with people who are rude and inconsiderate teach teenagers how to negoigate unpleasant situations without becoming unpleasant themselves. People who work at a young age tend to be more hard working. Working at a young age can help an individual decide what he wants to do, or just as importantly, what he does not want to do.

Young people can get “money hungry” and work just to maintain their paycheck. This can work against their future. Most youth who work think they are making the most of the money they are receiving, but many choose to stay at their current job rather than advancing to something that would lead to higher pay and more skills. 

Having a job also requires time management. Often time can be in short supply.  Candace Vasquez, junior, said,  “I barely have time to sleep. I work until 10 then come home and do my homework until midnight. I’m exhausted.” 

Students who work also tend to get sick more easily and miss more school. When an individual is tired from working a nights shift, she may be tempted to stay in bed, but missing school can impact grades and future opportunities, including college options. On the other hand, working and going to school helps teach balance. 

Then again, money IS money. Having money is all fun and games. . .until it isn’t. Having spending money can be exilerating, especially since a person can buy what she want without needing to ask permission. So many outings for youth today also requires money. Individuals ask, How do I get this or how do I get that? What can I do with this much? The list can go on and on .Other important commodities for youth are cell phones and car insurance.

Having money can give power, but it can also control an individual is he makes long term commitments. Money can leave an individual happy or depressed. Making a two-year commitment for cell phone plan means making a two-year commitment at making enough money to pay for it. Working can bring power, or it can control, depending on the choices made. Learning to manage money is an important skill that can come from working. 

Studemts who work should consider savings part of their paycheck. Everyone needs a little extra wiggle room just in case. Saving for college can also take pressure off later when academic demands are greater.

Employers value individuals with work experience. Looking for a job after college will be difficult, unless a person have some work or intern experience. Working as a teen will also give valuable experience interviewing and applying for jobs. Teen jobs may also provide a network or a recommendation that will help find work after an individual graduates from college

A number of students work to put themselves through college. When families cannot provide support, it is time for students to step it up and help themselves. Students can avoid years of loan repayment by working through school.

However, money is not everything, and people need to look at the bigger picture. Is the time spent working worth the time taken away from family and friends?

Working has its perks, but it also has its cost. Both should be considered.

 

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It can make or break you. Literally.