On a beautiful summer evening, most teenagers are hanging out with their friends or going to the movies, but not sophomore Tanner Maydak. His typical summer evening is spent umpiring little league games.
“I have to get the field ready, state my ground, remember I’m in control,” Maydak said. “It’s my responsibility [to] carry on with the game.”
Maydak is just one of many teenagers seeking employment during the summer months. Over the years, though, the number of teenagers looking for and having a summer job has declined.
According to MarketWatch, only 35 percent of teenager looked for and applied for a summer job in the past year. Most companies prefer older, more experienced workers compared to teenagers.
Even with the harder job market, it’s still possible for teenagers to find employment. Some students only prefer to work in the summer, though.
According to junior Josh Ciesniewski, “I can work longer shifts.”
Even though the job market is not thriving, numerous jobs are still available around Plainfield for high school students 16 or older. Some establishments include the Plainfield Park District, mini golf, ice cream parlors, lifeguarding and Raging Waves.
Junior Michael Schmauderer, who has been a lifeguard for the past two summers said he would rather have a summer job “because at least for the first few years of high school there are times where balancing work and school, plus sports for most, would be very hard.”
Some jobs are also available to students who are under the age of 16, like dog walking, babysitting and lawn care.
Junior Maddi Wolfe has worked as a nanny since 6th grade. Her responsibilities are to “Watch kids, feed them [and] entertain them,” Wolfe said.
Teens under the age of 16 must obtain a work permit in order to be employed. Certain rules must be followed. During non-school days, those individuals can work no more than eight-hour days and cannot exceed 48 hours per week. Work permit forms can be found at Student Services.
“The application was easy,” Maydak said. “I just had to fill out a list and notify the school.”
For the most part, summer jobs provide an opportunity to work and make money. An additional benefit is it gives an individual free time during the school year.
“I work all year round,” junior Hailey Mulligan said. “I would like only a summer one because of school.”
Getting a summer job can get teenagers prepared for working during the school year, though, as well as eventually getting a full-time job.
“I think it’s pretty good at teaching you time management and responsibility,” senior Andy Rousonelos said.
There are, however, some downsides to having a job during the summer.
“You have much less time that you have to yourself or your friends,” Rousonelos said.
Another issue is often outside conditions. The weather is not always a paradise for summer workers, and sometimes unplanned events or conditions can ruin a day at the job.
“[Cons of a summer job are] unexpected weather,” Maydak said. “There’s rainy days when you really want to do a game, but the field is ruined.”
Ultimately, having a summer job can help prepare teenagers for their career choices or future jobs.
“Despite the fact is takes up a lot of your time, summer jobs are useful,” Maydak said. “Once you have the opportunity, it helps in your future, more important jobs. It helps you find yourself and what you like and don’t like, and how to improve on that.”
Whether an individual is looking for a summer job or one to go into the school year, the website Snagajob, is a great place to begin the search for a job. Just enter age requirements as well as area, and jobs available pop up. Current jobs listed in Plainfield include Goodwill, Dunkin Donuts and Arby’s.
When it comes to applying for jobs, it is not difficult. Plenty of places, such as McDonalds have online applications. Once a person applies, most companies will call an aplicant for an interview.
“Some tips are to stay calm,” Maydak said. “Be truthful, answer any questions they ask, don’t say anything negative, and have fun.”