Young, Dumb, and Broke

The title of a song by sensational artist Khalid, can sum up high school teenagers pretty easily- “Young, Dumb, and Broke.” Students around Woodland, especially freshmen and sophomores, have to be creative when thinking of ways to get money, considering many can’t legally have a job. After questioning students around Woodland about how they get any money, I’ve compiled a list of three of the best unique jobs, and how to become qualified for them. So if birthday money just isn’t quite cutting it for the 365 days till your next birthday, this may be important to read.

  1. Woodland students actually do a wide variety of things to make money before the age of 16. One of the most popular jobs among our freshman and sophomore classes is babysitting. Whether it’s for their little brother or sister, their baby cousin, or their parents friends’ kids, Woodland kids seem to find their hands full with babysitting jobs. Babysitting is a really awesome first job to have depending on the circumstances, as kids can truly be crazy.  There isn’t always a set pay, and different factors come into play depending on who you babysit for. Some families pay more, depending on how many kids, if there are animals, and how long you stay for. There is no doubt that this is a great way for teens to make money, without the need to be 16 years old. The only one downside of becoming a babysitter is that you often must have a babysitting license, which you obtain by going through classes such as CPR training. This can be received typically between the ages 11-15, with only a one day course required.
  2. Another great job for teens, this one for those over the age of 15, would be life-guarding. The American Red Cross certifies teens 15 and older after they complete a course that will show them the ropes. Lifeguards usually make around minimum wage. While it may not sound like a lot, this amount builds up over time and is definitely perfect for teens. Plus, if you stick to it, experienced beach lifeguards can actually make up to $16.25 an hour. During the winter, Woodland has a free swim period some weeknights. Students who are certified lifeguards work at these, and get paid for it.
  3. Refereeing is a great job for students actively involved in sports like soccer or basketball. Not only does this job pay well (amount varies depending on age group and sport), but it also enhances one’s knowledge of these sports since they must go through courses before they can officially referee games. This job pays pretty well and you can work around your own personal schedule and often choose which games you would like to referee. Though one concern to think about, is one of the scariest things ever: crazy sports parents. Yes they are real, and yes they are vicious. So make sure you can handle a bit (or a lot) of yelling and criticism before taking up this job.

These three jobs are relatively easy to become qualified for and with all of them, you can work before the age 16. If none of these stuck out to you, there are tons more to choose from such as dog walking, tutoring, lawn mowing, pet sitting, and quite a bit more. Sometimes, family businesses will hire teens under 15, depending on the place. One final job that may sound obvious, but is important to remember, is that you can make a business at any age, out of something you love to do. You’ve been doing this longer than you think, with all of those lemonade stands you held in your elementary days (or middle school days). Whether you sell your art, things you cook/bake, or more, this is simple and enjoyable if it’s something you love. So get up, get motivated, and put yourself out there. You never know what you can earn money for, before age 16.

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