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A young person’s teenage years are a great opportunity for them to grow and develop through new freedoms, like getting a driver's license and responsibilities, like getting their first job. While a teen’s primary job is to get good grades in school, taking on a part-time job can teach a new level of responsibility to students and is an important right of passage in their lives. Here are a few reasons why it is important for teenagers to get a part-time job...
Encourage healthy spending/saving habits
The most obvious benefit of getting a part-time job is that teens gain the ability to earn some spending money that they can spend on whatever they want. However, our advice to parents is to take this opportunity to teach their children about how to establish healthy saving habits by putting some money aside in a savings account for a rainy day.
Start a college fund
In the same vein, the money that teens save from their new weekly paycheck can go directly into a college fund. College tuition is higher than ever, even at public institutions and a college education can result in tens - or even hundreds - of thousands of dollars in debt. Start your child off on the right foot by encouraging them to save for college, they’ll thank you when they’re older.
Learn how to balance responsibilities
Holding down a part-time job while in high school is a great indicator for future employers and colleges that someone is able to balance multiple responsibilities successfully. It is important for parents to work with students to make sure that their new job does not interfere with their academic success or important after school activities.
In addition to maintaining their success in school, teens must now also commit to arriving on time to their new job, maintaining their appearance based on their employer’s guidelines and perform their job responsibilities which will likely involve some aspect of customer service. Developing these skills will serve them well over the course of their career, no matter what they ultimately decide to do in the future.
Explore future career interests
In many cases, students get a chance to explore their own interests or gain new ones through a part-time job. For example, a teen may have never thought that a career in a restaurant was something that they would be interested in, but after learning more about how restaurants are operated, they may be interested in pursuing a career in food service after high school.
On the other hand, students who may have thought they knew for sure what they wanted to do in the future may have a change of heart after working first hand in the industry. Both insights are incredibly helpful to experience when shaping their future goals.
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