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Reality of applying for a job as a teenager

Updated: Jan 23, 2023

Not even 20 years ago applying for a job was a different process, people would have to search for hiring signs and walk into buildings to fill out an application, and they were lucky if they would get the job.

Nowadays applying for jobs is far easier, all that's needed is a phone and access to the internet. While websites and apps such as Indeed make the whole process a lot easier, it doesn’t mean you're guaranteed a job.

Senior Alexa Ramirez has been applying for jobs since the beginning of summer because she wanted to feel more independent as well as buy things for herself and her family. During the entirety of the summer break, she applied to several places through either Indeed or a company website but never got offered a job. The majority of businesses that are hiring typically want someone who is 17 years old or older because hiring those 16 and younger is considered riskier due to a lack of experience and maturity.

With Ramirez being 16 it was hard for her to find a job and she stated, “It’s annoying to find a job because most employers want people with experience even though I'm trying to get a job for experience.” Although Ramirez has been denied many jobs she is still hopeful that in the future she can work and earn her own money.

Some people don't even get the chance to apply due to complications. Junior Emily Hernandez just like many others started thinking about getting a job for money. While scouting out places to work Hernandez realized it wouldn’t be as simple as she thought. Since she didn’t have a driver's license it would be harder for her to have consistent hours where she could work, which is the one thing that jobs specifically look for when you apply.

Similarly, Junior Raja Saadiq-Saoud hasn’t had the opportunity to work. Although interested in the work environment Saadiq remarked "I haven't really taken a step mainly because I don't think I'm old enough, also the career center lady is out, so it's like there's not really anybody that specializes in jobs."

Even though for some people finding a job is difficult, for others it comes easy. Senior Jose Velasco Flores first applied to KFC through their online website in January and got hired the week after. Flores asserted, “The application and interview for me were easy,” and even though at the time he was 16, he still managed to get the job.

Getting hired ultimately depends on where you apply, some places could not hire you for one reason, while other places might not hire you for another. While job searching is different for everyone, what matters in the end, is whether or not you’re happy.


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