What are Some Jobs for High School Students?

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen

Jobs for high school students offer a variety of working experiences. Some can give you work that will be valuable in your future education or help you make decisions about a future career. Other jobs give you needed job skills and allow you to earn some cash. Some work for teens occurs only during the summer or on long school breaks, such as working as a life guard or camp counselor, or there are other jobs for high school students that are offered on a year round basis.

High school students often work as store clerks during the summer.
High school students often work as store clerks during the summer.

You should know that different countries might have different rules that govern how much you can work. Some countries and certain US states may have specific laws about your ability to work, your need to get parental permission, and the amount of time you can legally work in a given day or week. These laws can be to your advantage since they will protect from overwork by employers. Get familiar with labor laws in your state or country before seeking work to make sure you’ll qualify for jobs you might like to hold.

Mowing lawns may be excellent seasonal jobs for students.
Mowing lawns may be excellent seasonal jobs for students.

If you’re too young to hold down a job from most private sector employees, as many students under the age of 16 may be, there are still plenty of jobs that you can get. Many of these are things like taking care of children, working as junior camp counselors, doing housework or lawn and garden work, or possibly even delivering weekly newspapers. Babysitting can actually be a very lucrative profession and allows you to decide exactly how much you want to work.

High school students may work at a grocery store stocking shelves with cans and other food items.
High school students may work at a grocery store stocking shelves with cans and other food items.

Many parents rely on the services of babysitters and a good babysitter with excellent references and lots of experience can command a rate well above minimum wage. If you’re interested in pursuing this, take some baby-sitting classes where available, especially infant and child CPR. Don’t forget that you might be able to hold a summer childcare position since many parents who work full-time are faced with tough decisions about how to provide childcare for younger kids during the summer months when school is not in session.

High school students may be hired to work in a local ice cream shop.
High school students may be hired to work in a local ice cream shop.

Private sector jobs for high school students are often entry-level work. Places to look include at retail stores, hotels, restaurants, grocery stores, and environments where receptionists are required. Many well-known coffee chains hire workers on a part time basis, and lots of retail jobs become available during the Christmas season.

High school students may be hired to deliver pizzas.
High school students may be hired to deliver pizzas.

If you’re good at your work, you may be able to retain seasonal jobs year round. Such work won’t usually pay much above minimum wage, but they can help you train in the service sector, and these useful skills can help you land jobs later in life. Similarly, work in restaurants, especially entry-level work such as hostessing and busing tables, is fairly easy for teens to find.

High school students looking for work should fill out job applications at establishments in their area.
High school students looking for work should fill out job applications at establishments in their area.

Other jobs for high school students may give you additional experience. Companies may need part time office assistants, and if you have basic office and computer skills and a pleasant manner, you may be able to find one of these. Students that are skilled in a musical instrument or that have high academic achievement could find work giving private music lessons or tutoring.

You do want to consider exactly what jobs for high school students will best fit in with your schedule. Employers who can’t respect your schedule and routinely schedule you to work too many hours or when you are not available will cause conflicts in fulfilling your high school work. Many employers are excellent at understanding this and if they hire a lot of high school students they may already have a good sense of the scheduling needs of most high school kids.

Many students work as cashiers during the summer.
Many students work as cashiers during the summer.
Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen

Tricia has a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and has been a frequent wiseGEEK contributor for many years. She is especially passionate about reading and writing, although her other interests include medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion. Tricia lives in Northern California and is currently working on her first novel.

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Discussion Comments

submariner

High school students have been hit particularly hard during the last economic downturn. Lately, job openings for high school students are hard to come by. Many of the positions that were once reserved for high school students have been filled by laid off professionals looking for anything to fill the economic void created by the recession.

This has become almost a double hit recession for high school students because college tuition has gone up. Smaller alumni endowments and less state funding have led to many colleges raising tuition rates. Those high school students that must work to save for college may need to find other sources of funding.

Georgesplane

@ aplenty- Another part time job for high school students similar to kitchen work is working at an amusement or theme park. These jobs are often havens for students looking for work. They hire when school lets out and often have to lay-off or cut hours when school starts back up. The work is usually easy, and it can be fun. This is a good job for a student who needs to earn a little money, but still wants to have fun over their summer vacation.

aplenty

Kitchen jobs can be great part time summer jobs for students. Restaurants often need prep cooks, dishwashers, servers, and hosts during the busy summer months. These jobs can also pay well for part time work, and schedules are often flexible. Shifts are centered around meal times giving students the opportunity to work any time of day.

Kitchen jobs also offer students opportunities for temporary work during holiday breaks. Without students, many restaurants would struggle to hire enough people through the busy holiday season. In a way, restaurants need students just as much as a student needs a flexible job.

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