Jobs in High School

Maintaining Educational goals while working can be a challenge


As students gain more time to engulf themselves in personal activities, many individuals utilize this time to be more productive. This time of productivity may include school work, jobs, or even hobbies. Some students have taken advantage of their free time during quarantine, to earn additional funds for personal and professional purposes. Such students are sure to face obstacles and experience different difficulties when working. For this topic we interviewed Matthew Bernardino, a senior at Langston Hughes Academy.

When questioned about the most difficult part of working as a high school student, he responded, “The most difficult thing is managing my sleep schedule and time management for school homework since I work close to fifty hours every two weeks.”

He says, “My purpose for work is to be able to have money for myself and to gain work experience… working allows me to gain some humbleness and transition into adulthood.”

We asked about Matthew’s work and school routine and he responded, “I would say I handle school and work relatively well. I usually wake up at 8:15 a.m. to get ready for school online. [School] usually finishes around 12:20 p.m, and then I start to get ready for work. After school I usually go to work at 1:30 until 5 p.m. After that I go home and usually see if I have any homework and might wait till the end of the week to do it. Fridays and Saturdays are tough days as … we usually close at 12 a.m. and clean till 1:30 a.m. This would be the hardest day because the next few days are harder to wake up, and my sleeping schedule gets thrown off due to staying up so late… Sundays and Wednesdays are my days off, and I will allocate those days to doing homework.”

We then asked him about the most surprising factor of working part time. He said, “Something that surprised me the most was that I was able to … connect with all my co-workers, which is really cool and fun because it makes time move by a little quicker, and you get to make new friends … Something else I was not expecting was the fact that mostly everyone thinks that I am a good, efficient worker… I did not expect the general manager to say that he “likes my energy” and wants me to ‘keep it up’.”

To conclude the interview we asked, “What is a piece of advice you would give to individuals that want to work during high school?” Matthew Bernardino answered, “Something I would give for advice is for the person to check their availability first. Many people… already have it tough and sometimes adding on work to that can get stressful … Something really important to consider is your location. Finding a job nearby can be really beneficial because you can get there faster, and as a high school student we do not always have cars, and [instead] we can walk, bike, or skateboard to work if there isn’t a ride … Also very simple, do not blow all your money on food and stuff, saving is essential so if you go out with friends and family or if something happens, you need money!”

It is important to acknowledge the efforts of scholars and their journey to becoming more independent as students and adults because it gives others perspectives on future life stages. Viewed through Matthew’s responses, managing school and work is both beneficial and challenging. This demonstrates the hardships and advantages of persevering through difficult times and experiences.