Tips for teens' summer job search

On the Money
June 2, 2008 5:35:34 PM PDT
New York Governor David Paterson announced he is making more money available to state programs that help provide summer jobs for teenagers.Still, with the tight economy, many teens are facing a tough job search this summer.

In our continuing series, "On the Money," Eyewitness News reporter Carolina Leid looks at what options teenagers have.

"It's pretty simple," Kevin Cuesta said. "You just got to make sure you bag the right stuff so the customers don't get mad."

The 15-year-old Cuesta is a bagger at Fairway Supermarket in Harlem.

He says summer jobs, especially this year, are hard to come by for kids his age.

"All my friends come to me at school, talking about you hook me up," he said. "But I can't do that, especially since I'm like the youngest one here. I'm 15. I'm like the only one working out of all my friends, and it's getting pretty hard as you can see."

Kevin works to help his family out. He says networking got his foot in the door, but his school performance nailed him the job.

"If you have good grades and you know teachers leave good comments, then that helps a lot," he said.

"I think that it is tough, but it's not hopeless," Karyn Twaronite said. "Opportunities are out there."

Twaronite is the northeast area people leader at Ernst and Young.

The company hires thousands of students each summer. She knows a thing or two about hiring.

Her first piece of advice is to get a job in a filed you're interested in. Not only will you earn cash, but gain experience for a potential career.

Second, like Kevin, you should network.

"Look hard at their relationships with their parents, parents' friends, other friends of the family, other friends through volunteer work, friends through social networking sites to see if those people have access to any opporunities that may be out there," Twaronite said.

Karyn's third tip is to be open minded.

It may not be your dream job, but the opportunity may open other doors.

Kevin says he plans to keep working at Fairway until he graduates high school.

For previous On the Money stories, click here.