WASHINGTON (5/16/11)--Teens hoping to make some summer cash might need to put in a little extra effort when looking for a job. An analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows that 25 states still have teen unemployment rates higher than 25%, according to the Employment Policies Institute (EPI), Washington, D.C. “Nationally, nearly one in four teens is looking for work without success,” said Michael Saltsman, research fellow at EPI. Facing a challenging market, teens will need to be proactive when seeking employment. U.S. News & World Report
(March 17) offers these suggestions to help teens land that summer gig:
* Don’t wait. Many seasonal employers, such as amusement parks, have filled summer positions already. Apply as early as possible for the best chance of finding a job. * Look beyond summer programs. Government summer-employment programs, often popular with teens, are hiring fewer students this year due to budget cuts. Teens might find more opportunity if they look for work as a waiter or retail-store employee. For instance, The Home Depot plans to hire 60,000 workers this summer--a number comparable with past summers. * Be an entrepreneur. Think about your skills and how you could use them to create your own summer work. Babysitting, lawn mowing, or tutoring are all promising options. Plus, you’ll face less competition from other job seekers. * Dress to impress. Select professional clothing for the interview, even if the position you’re applying for doesn’t require it. This shows maturity and makes a positive first impression. * Don’t throw in the towel. Even if you’re not having any luck finding a job, don’t give up. Many teens admit defeat early on because they don’t expect the job hunt to be so difficult. Remember that summer work is excellent experience and can help you find employment during and even after college. So keep at it--your diligence will likely pay off.
For more information, watch “How to Help Your Teen Enter the Work Force” in the Home & Family Finance Resource Center