High school is a time when many people start their first job. Working for the first time can help teens gain important experiences that will help them succeed in the future. There are a lot of reasons high school students might be interested in getting a job. Many teens may find that they have more free time than they know what to do with. Some teens may be interested in getting their first job, so they can save up some money for the future.

However, finding a job that is suitable for a teen 17 and under can be tricky; there are many restrictions and rules about what minors can and can’t do. Here is some important information any teen should know before looking for their first job.

Working papers and permits
In New York State, teens under the age of 18 are required to get working papers before they find a job. If you are 14-15 years old, you receive blue working papers, which means you are not allowed to work in manufacturing. Teens ages 16 and 17 who are in school receive green working papers, which means that you are allowed to work in manufacturing, but there are some restrictions, like construction work and certain machinery. Teens ages 16 and 17 who are not in school receive peach working papers. This allows you to work in manufacturing, but you cannot work near certain machines.

Vermont has slightly different rules than New York; teens 16 years and older do not need any permits to work. However, if you are under 16, you are required to apply for employment certificates that allow minors who are 14 and 15 to work during school hours.

Restrictions to know
In New York State, employees under the age of 18 have restrictions on the amount of hours they can work. These include the amount of hours they work in a day, what times during the day they’re allowed to work, and the amount of hours they’re allowed to work each week when school is in session, as well as during the summer.

In Vermont, teenagers who are 14 and 15 can only work a limited amount of hours because of youth labor laws, and these restrictions affect hours worked during school days. Once they turn 16, teens are no longer affected by child labor laws concerning schedule, but teens who are 16 to 18 are not allowed to work in manufacturing for more than nine hours a day or 50 hours a week.

Now that you know the rules, here are some jobs that are suitable for teens 17 and younger!

  • Retail
  • Grocery store cashier
  • Restaurant Host/Waiter/Cook
  • Lifeguard (if 15 and certified)
  • Food Delivery (if 16 and with a valid license)
  • Babysitter
  • Ice Cream Scooper
  • Receptionist (depending on the company)
  • Construction (non-hazardous jobs only)
  • Yard Work
  • Pet Sitter
  • Dog Walker
  • Seasonal Employee (think landscaping, marinas and campgrounds)
  • Movie Theater Employee
  • Gym

Why should a teen want to start working?
Although making money is a very obvious reason to get a job, there are actually many advantages of having a job as a teen; the biggest one is experience. You’ll hone your communication skills as you interact with customers, show your commitment and dedication by showing up every day, and start exploring different career paths. These skills will ensure your resume stands-out in the future, whether you’re applying to college or looking for a full-time job.

How to get started
When starting your job hunt, the most important thing is that you get your working papers or permits, depending on what state you live in. Teens can ask for an application from their school’s guidance office. Once the forms are filled out and signed by a guardian, they can be brought back to the guidance office along with a form of ID and the teen must have a doctor’s exam within the last year.

Once this is done, it is helpful to have a good resume. Writing a resume can be an overwhelming and difficult task to do alone. Small things like format and word choice can make a huge difference. Click here and here to see some important things to keep in mind when creating a resume!

Once you’ve created the perfect resume, it’s time to prepare for your interview with your future employer. Interviews can seem daunting and intimidating, but proper preparation can help you feel more comfortable and ready to show your interviewer that you are the right fit for the job. Here are some articles that will help you impress your prospective employer!

While finding a job as a teen can seem complicated and confusing at first, there are simple steps you can take to make the process easier! Getting a job while in high school will open up many opportunities and help develop essential skills and qualities, like good communication and independence, as well as build up your resume.

Looking for guidance on finding your first job, creating a resume or interviewing? Want to know what careers are forecasted for high demand? It’s never too early to connect with an ETS Recruiter >> live chat us now.