Financial Aid Planning
US Department of
Do you know anyone that really loves their job? Do
you consider people like this lucky? Maybe there is some luck
involved, it was also a matter of knowing how to match up skills with
the right job.
Before you even look for a job, ask
yourself these 4 questions:
1. What you love to do more than anything else?
2. What talents do people compliment or praise you
3. What would you love to learn more about?
4. If someone needed you help, what could show or teach that
person how to do?
The answers to these questions gets us started on the
process of self-discovery. This will help us narrow our job search
and allow us to show employers why they should hire us.
For example, a person that loves animals and has experience talking car of
fish, dogs, cats, and other pets might want to look for a job as a dog
walker, horse groomer, zoo worker, or kennel assistant. Be creative!
Maybe that person could even consider their own home-based business to set
up, clean and maintain home aquariums or provide other pet car services in
Sometimes young people don't know where
to start. They are still learning skills and may not understand how
their skills are needed in different jobs. It is also
important to also think about skills and things we would like to learn.
For example, if you think you might like to own a
restaurant someday, working in catering or in a restaurant may get you
started. A person that might want to work in police or emergency
services can learn more about these job skills by working as a security
guard, park monitor or life guard.
Job hunting begins
with identifying skills or desires. Not only does this get you ready
for the "hunt", but it also provides motivation beyond the paycheck and
sparks an inner drive that will also be seen by potential employers.
Letting people know you are able and ready to work is important.
So start a job hunt by thinking about yourself. Don’t be shy in
talking about your “dreams”, talents or skills when filling out a job
application or talking in a job interview. Employers want more than
people that just want a job. Employers want employees that are eager
to share what they know and learn new skills.
want to hire motivated teens that are going to arrive to work on time,
have a positive attitude, work hard, get along with others, show
leadership qualities, work their full shift, and do the best job they can.
Keep this in mind when you are presenting yourself to employers. Try
to show that you are a good investment right now as an entry level
employee and a good investment for any potential future positions.
We all have to get started somewhere. When you
accept a job, do it to the best of your ability. Go to work, no
matter how "cool" the job or company seems and be prepared to accept
that some days are no going to be as great as others. When you start a
job, remember that you are earning money, you are gaining experience,
and you are making good contacts (and references).
Job Hunting Tips for Teenagers
Finding Out Who's Hiring
Ask if your school has job postings.
Inquire at your school about work/study programs.
Look for "Help Wanted" or "Now Hiring" signs in windows.
Check the want ads in local newspapers.
Check out the information desk at shopping malls. Get in
touch with an employment agency that handles part-time or temporary
help. Make sure there's no charge for the service.
Call a large company where you'd like to apply and ask
for the Human Resources Department. Ask if they have any job openings
for teenagers. Find out where to go to fill out an application.
Explore Internet websites that have job postings.
Filling Out an Application
Fill it out completely. Don't leave any questions
Complete the application in pen, with blue or black ink.
Use your full name as it appears on your birth certificate or driver's
Use a dictionary or spell-checker to avoid misspelling.
Take your time; print neatly.
Be specific about the date you can begin working.
Be accurate as to which days and times you are available
Choose your references carefully. Always ask their
If you have a resume, staple it to the application.
To apply for a job, you must have a social security
number. If you're under sixteen, you'll need to get a work permit. You
can obtain one from your school.
Creating a Resume
Keep the resume clear and simple, only one page in
Put your name, address, and telephone number in bold
Use headings like Education, Experience, Interests,
Awards, and Personal. Put the headings in bold print or underline the
words to highlight them.
List job experiences, beginning with the most recent.
Don't forget to include jobs like babysitting, yard work, volunteer
work, and community service.
Brag about yourself!
Going in for the Interview
Bring to the interview:
Pen with blue or black ink
Date book or calendar
Application, if you haven't already returned it
Hours you are available to work
Letters of recommendation, if any
Resume, if you have one
Your alien card if you are not a United States citizen
Be on time.
Look your best. Have good hygiene. Dress conservatively.
Don't wear perfume. Don't chew gum.
Don't bring a beeper
or a cell phone.
Try to relax.
Shake hands and introduce yourself.
Smile. Make eye contact.
Take your time answering questions. Answer in full
sentences. Be honest.
Express your thanks for the opportunity to be
Find Summer Jobs
Local merchants: local stores often need good help – and
not just in the summer.
Small businesses: most towns have a number of small
business offices – and your family or friends probably know several
owners or office managers.
Corporate offices: many have established summer jobs and
internship programs, but often these are the most competitive.
Stores at the mall: have a favorite store you like to
shop at in the mall? Maybe now is the time to get a job there –- just be
careful not to spend all your earnings buying their products.
Hotels and resorts: summer is the busy season for most
hotels and resorts.
Tourist attractions: even if you don't live in Florida
or California, most states have tourist attractions that especially need
help during the busy tourism season.
Golf & Tennis clubs: as the weather improves, these
clubs are usually looking for part-time help.
Grocery stores: maybe not the most exciting jobs, but probably the most
convenient -– and not just for summer.
Fast food and restaurants: local restaurants always need
good help -– and while not the most glamorous, it's still a job.
Parks and recreation departments: city, state, and
national parks and recreation departments often develop special summer
programs, and thus have job opportunities.
Local government summer job programs: often various
government agencies sponsor different kinds of summer youth work
Summer camps: okay, you went to camp as a kid – now you
can go back as a counselor and get paid while being at camp.
Working for yourself: there are all sorts of
jobs/businesses you could develop for yourself in your neighborhood
The Web: especially if you want to work outside your
neighborhood, or even your state, the Web is the place for you to
explore all sorts of summer job opportunities.