article by Andres Vargas
edited by Cam Goodrich
Our high school experience plays a huge role in our lives. The decisions made in high school will affect the average person for the rest of their life. It is full of opportunities and is a time when you learn who you are and what you want to be. One opportunity in particular, working during high school, can really impact your lifestyle and can either aid you or hurt you during this important part of your life. Many people choose to seize this opportunity and get a job during their high school education. A statistic from thinkprogress.org states, “As of October 2015…. Youth enrolled in high school had an employment rate of 18 percent”. That means that in almost every 1 in 5 high school students will be employed.
An MHS alumni, Anthony Galluze, worked at two jobs over the course of his high school career. He first started working when he was 15, at his first job, McDonald’s in Biddeford. “The first job was harder to get than my second job. It was still pretty easy, you just had to go to an interview, sit there with a smile on your face and say yes ma’am.” When asked about how work interfered with his lifestyle, he said that an initial obstacle he faced was not having a car, but he had sufficient time to balance schoolwork and his job and it was generally an easy experience. One issue he did face however, was how it interfered with sports. Anthony played soccer and paintball and said that it restricted his ability to partake in those activities. Thus, there were some compromises that had to be made. However, he gained a lot of benefits from working. “ I definitely learned a lot of things from working. First off, I learned the value of the dollar, money isn’t just free, the value behind it needs to be earned. I definitely learned money management, I saved some of the money I got, I wasted some of it; it was a learning curve. I also learned time management and I learned to get along with people that I couldn’t have before if I didn’t go to work.” Anthony’s first job definitely provided a rewarding cash flow, but he also explained how those kinds of jobs just didn’t pay enough.
Anthony’s Second Job, Sonny’s Convenience Store, in Lyman ME
"Sonny's Convenience Store Photos." Yelp. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Mar. 2017.
Anthony’s second job, Sonny’s Convenience Store in Lyman, was a different involvement. First off, he now had a car, which was an improvement, and he got a better paycheck. However, he now had to create a resume. When you’re in high school, there's not a lot to put on a resume, and it can be a challenge. Since Anthony had worked at a job before that, he didn’t really have an issue with his resume. He said that working was more rewarding than school because he got money, but a job is more demanding than school. He was working for up to four hours on school nights, but could only work for 20 hours a week during school. During the summer, working was easier on him, because he wasn’t tired from being at school all day, and he could work more hours per week, but he did mention some sacrifices he had made for his job. HIs job was taking up a lot of his free time, and he did feel like he was missing out on hanging out with his friends on the weekends. Working in high school was really beneficial for Anthony, but not everyone has as easy of a time as Anthony. Having a job can be very demanding at times, and it’s not suitable for everyone. There are many sacrifices to be made, but it can be a very rewarding experience.
"Youth Employment." Child Trends. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Mar. 2017.