Credit: Annabelle Zhang
Wayland students share their summer job experiences
For many high school students, summer vacation is the perfect time to get real-world experience by working at a job. At Wayland High School, there are a variety of students who work over the summer in order to gain work experience and some extra cash before graduation.
For many WHS students, working is a great opportunity to earn money before college and gain work experience that will last a lifetime. According to a survey with 120 WHS student respondents, about 48% of WHS students are planning to work a summer job and will be able to use those experiences to better understand the real-world application process and work-life.
For many, the first step of getting a summer job is the application process. Sometimes the application process includes an interview, which determines whether or not a person will receive the job they are applying for.
“[I advise students looking for a summer job to] have a resume with good [credentials] like community service and your education [experience],” senior Guery Ortega said. “If you’re doing an interview, checking to [make sure] you’re dedicated and interested in the job will [help you] not be as nervous because if you want something, you try your hardest to get it. For me, that helped outweigh the sense of dread [of] an interview.”
In addition to preparing for college, Ortega is planning to do custodial work for his grandmother this summer. Ortega chose his job based on convenience and family relations, but he advises students to choose work based on their own personal interests.
“It’s always good to have a part time job in my opinion,” Ortega said. “You understand how working works, and that’s important if you want to pursue any job in the future. [You will] know how the system works and what kind of job [you are passionate about].”
Similarly to Ortega, sophomore Lilith Altreuter decided on working at the Wayland community pool because of its location and the skills she already has.
“I’ve done swimming for a while, and while I’m no longer on a swim team, it just seemed like [getting] a job [involving swimming] would be a natural progression,” Altreuter said. “It’s [also] very easy for me to get to the community pool [since] I live within biking distance.”
For Altreuter, a summer job provides some financial independence for minors who otherwise mostly rely on their guardians for spending money.
“Some kids would normally have to rely on either an allowance or money from relatives from birthdays or holidays,” Altreuter said. “It’s nice to have a bit of extra money because that means you can have the resources available to go out with friends, [and it is] just very convenient in general.”
However, having a job may limit a student’s ability to see their friends over the summer. For that reason, many students, like freshman Nicole Angelova, become friends with their co-workers. Angelova is working at Energy Fitness and Gymnastics as one the gym’s summer camp counselors.
“A lot of my friends are my co-workers and teammates [during my regular gymnastics season],” Angelova said. “I still get to see [my gymnastics friends pretty much] everyday, which is good. Sometimes it’s difficult to see my school friends because they’re not always at the gym like me, [so] I just try to use my weekends to see people [like my school friends].”
Like Ortega and Altreuter, Angelova chose her job based on her previous experiences. She enjoys participating in gymnastics herself, so teaching that joy to younger children is something Angelova is more passionate about compared to other kinds of jobs.
“[Students] should definitely find a job that has to do with something that they already like,” Angelova said. “Maybe [students] could coach or teach kids [in] a sport they like. There’s also fast food jobs which are available to students my age.”
Even if some students have jobs that others might not enjoy as much, having a part-time job over the summer provides many students with valuable experiences that will aid them when students begin looking for full-time careers.
“[Having a job] teaches you so much,” Angelova said. “You get more responsible and it’s good to be able to have your own money. [Working] has made me a much more confident person because I’m less afraid to talk to [other people] now.”