The student news publication of Libertyville High School

Drops of Ink

The student news publication of Libertyville High School

Drops of Ink

The student news publication of Libertyville High School

Drops of Ink

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Courtesy of Yumz
Grant Dean and his fellow co-workers posed for a photo for the Yumz’s Facebook page.

Studies show that the national teenage employment rate has decreased approximately 42 percent over the last decade. Today the teenage unemployment rate is around 21.4 percent for those between the ages of 16 and 19, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But many teenagers at Libertyville High School have defied this fact.

All around Libertyville, students find jobs, working at various stores and restaurants. Working in downtown Libertyville seems to be the most popular.

Mainstreet Libertyville is an ideal location to work due to its proximity to LHS and the surrounding subdivisions. Downtown Libertyville jobs are also popular because many peers interact with the workers, creating a more friendly, enjoyable environment.

Teenagers take on jobs for many reasons. Teens start with an easy job, to get experience. Then their next job is a little harder, but less overwhelming because they have experience.

Other students work because they want the sense of responsibility and independence. But over all, the main reason teenagers get jobs is to earn some extra cash.

“I want to save up money for college,” said junior Riley Delude, an employee at Mickey Finn’s Brewery.

When a teenager has a part-time job, it relieves some of the economic burden on the parents. It helps not having to give out money when their teen runs out or having to fund 100% of the student’s education after high school.

Teens also tend to spend their parents’ money more freely, so when they finally have money of their own, they tend to spend it more carefully.

“I never spend my own money, but when I get money from my parents, it’s a whole different story,” said sophomore Marissa Garapolo, an employee at Petranek’s Pharmacy.

Part-time jobs don’t just magically appear; teenagers have to apply, just like everyone else.

“I went online, applied and had an interview that following week,” said Grant Dean, an employee at Yumz and junior at LHS.

Other students land jobs through family friends or know other students at a particular location where they can apply. “I got the job from a girl in Orchesis, who posted on Facebook about a job opening,” said Garapolo.

Several of the teens interviewed said they didn’t need much background experience to get a job, just be sociable and ready to work.

From working tables to fitting shoes, teenagers work all types of jobs, and no two jobs are alike. Some students work jobs involving lots of cleaning or refilling food, such as Loven Oven Bakery or Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory.  Others just say “hello” and walk customers to their table, for example a hostess at a restaurant.

Other popular jobs for teenagers in Libertyville are at Sunset Foods and Sports 11. In general,  the teens interviewed have low-maintenance jobs that consume little time. Some teens incorporate fun into their job by working with a friend or working at a very popular place.

Teens also get many perks from their jobs. For example, they can receive a free cup of yogurt at Yumz or half off their meal at Mickey Finn’s. Some students even get discounts on clothes at their workplace, such as at Forest Bootery and other clothing stores.

But having a job is not all fun and games. Balancing school work, sports or extracurricular activities, and a job is pretty tricky.

“It’s very difficult to manage everything, but my boss is really understanding,” said Garapolo.

That’s why some teens stick to jobs that have a more flexible schedule, such as mowing lawns or babysitting. These jobs are easier for busier teens to maintain.

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The student news publication of Libertyville High School
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