19 Pros and Cons of Having a Job in High School

High School Job

High school can be hard enough.

Having a job will require a bit of juggling.

This means that you have to consider whether it is worth it or not.

There are both pros and cons to having a job while in high school.

Knowing what you will have to look forward to will make it easier to decide if you want to hold down a part-time job while still going to class every day.

Pros of Having a Job in High School

There are all sorts of pros to having a job in high school, starting with the ability to earn a paycheck every week.

With so many benefits, it is worth knowing why getting a job in high school can be a good thing.

1. Enjoy Cash Flow

Depending on where you live and the kind of job that you have, the cash flow can be a great benefit to working a job in high school.

You may have the ability to earn $100 or more each week, providing you with money for all of the “extra” things that you want.

You can have money to buy clothes, get a car, go on dates, and hang out with friends.

2. Establish a Savings Account

Earning a paycheck gives you a chance to establish a savings account.

The money that you put into your savings account can be used to help you once you graduate high school.

You may have the desire to attend college – and the money you earn now can help to pay for tuition.

A solid savings account can also help you with other financial goals, like investing in a business or buying your first home.

3. Learn About Budgeting

Budgeting is an important tool as you grow up and enter society.

Even though you may have been taught about budgeting in school, there is nothing quite like putting it into practice.

You can learn more about how to manage your money to save for big expenses.

Plus, you will be able to appreciate the value of a dollar.

4. Build Confidence

Having some money in your pocket can help to build confidence.

You will know that you have the financial means to take care of yourself in various situations without having to depend on others.

The money that you make can also be used to buy various things that will make you more confident – like new clothes.

5. Provides You with an Extracurricular Activity

Having a job provides you with an extracurricular activity.

This can be placed on college applications to show that you know how to manage your time effectively.

Especially if you are not interested in school clubs, this can be a great way to get out there and do something.

When you have a part-time job, you never have to worry about being bored.

6. Learn a Skill

You will have the opportunity to learn a new skill that can be used throughout your entire life.

Many jobs that you will be able to get as a high school student focus on customer service, dealing with money, and more.

You can use your part-time job as a chance to check out a variety of industries so that you know more about the kind of career you want to go into after graduation.

7. Gain Independence

You will have the opportunity to gain a significant amount of independence with a job.

You will have to manage your schedule, report to the job on time every day, and learn to manage your money.

Earning a wage will help you to become independent from your parents.

Plus, as you prove yourself, your boss will give you more projects so that you can show your independence.

8. Build a Resume

Job experience is important – and companies like to see that you have some kind of experience.

Being able to put something down on your resume, helps to build character and show that you have some skills.

Gaining experience while you are still in high school can lead to higher-paying jobs once you graduate.

9. Meet New People

Getting a job while you’re in high school will help you to meet new people.

You can expand your social circle beyond those who go to your high school.

You may also meet various clients and business leaders in the community who can be an asset once you graduate, creating new job opportunities for you.

Cons of Having a Job in High School

There are only so many jobs that you can get while you are in high school, especially due to the limited hours that you can work.

By understanding the cons, you can decide if it is worth it to move forward and get a job while you are still in school.

1. Takes Time Away from Homework

High school students often have homework.

Depending on the courses you take, you may have 5 to 10 hours of homework each and every week, including reading, essays, and more.

If you are working a job after school, it means that you have less time to work on your homework.

You will need to get used to balancing a job so that your schoolwork doesn’t suffer.

2. Lose Out on High School Experience

You may spend more time working your part-time job than experiencing all that high school has to offer.

If you do not attend homecoming because you are working or you are too tired from your job to go to a pep rally, you may look back and miss that you never got to enjoy all that high school students love.

3. Limits Time for Extracurricular Activities

When you are working 10 to 20 hours a week, you will not have time for the extracurricular activities that you want to enjoy.

You may not be able to try out for the school play or participate in a team sport.

Instead, you will be working while everyone else is out having fun.

4. Adds Stress

High school can be stressful, especially when you are working to maintain a certain GPA.

Working a job can be stressful, too.

When you combine the two, it can be more stressful than you can effectively manage.

You will lose sleep and become frustrated until your performance at work suffers or your grades start to fall.

5. Extra Money Can Lead to Unhealthy Habits

With money suddenly in your pocket, you may pick up a variety of unhealthy habits.

You may find that it is easier to get drugs, tobacco, and alcohol with cash.

You may also find that you’re able to spend more money on food, which can lead to weight problems.

It will be important for you to manage your money carefully so that you do not fall into any bad habits.

6. You May Have to Wait on Classmates

Particularly if you go into food service, there may be times when you have to wait on people who go to your high school.

This can lead to some ridicule, especially if you are serving your classmates or you are forced to wear a costume for work.

You will have to remember that you enjoy your paycheck to help you get through certain shifts.

7. Schedules Change

Schedules are going to change from week to week.

You will have to remember to request time off for important dates like sitting for your SATs or going to prom.

If you are on the schedule for an important date, you will have to find someone to cover you or risk missing a key event.

8. Pay is Low

High school students are notoriously some of the most underpaid of the working class.

Some states even have rules where they can pay less than minimum wage because you are a student.

This means that you may end up doing the same job as adults but getting paid less.

Once taxes are taken out of your paycheck, it may not be worth the aggravation and stress of working.

9. Jobs are Competitive

High school students have limited to no experience.

There is only a limited number of minimum wage jobs in any town that do not require experience or skills.

As such, the jobs are highly competitive.

It may take you a while to find a company that is willing to hire you while you are still in high school.

Prepare to fill out a lot of applications before you land your first job.

10. Work is Usually Menial

Most high school students end up doing the minimum wage work that no one else wants to do.

Even if you have a relatively good job title, you will end up being the one who is tasked to clean up the messes, work late, and take care of the tasks that are less than desirable.

It can make it difficult to love the job that you do.

Pros and Cons of Having a Job in High School – Summary Table

Pros of Having a Job in High SchoolCons of Having a Job in High School
1. Enjoy Cash Flow1. Takes Time Away from Homework
2. Establish a Savings Account2. Lose Out on High School Experience
3. Learn About Budgeting3. Limits Time for Extracurricular Activities
4. Build Confidence4. Adds Stress
5. Provides You with an Extracurricular Activity5. Extra Money Can Lead to Unhealthy Habits
6. Learn a Skill6. You May Have to Wait on Classmates
7. Gain Independence7. Schedules Change
8. Build a Resume8. Pay is Low
9. Meet New People9. Jobs are Competitive
10. Work is Usually Menial

Should You Work a Job in High School?

Working a job in high school can offer a number of perks, including lining your pocket with cash and providing you with confidence.

It is important to find a job that will work with your schedule knowing that your priority has to be school.

As long as you can establish a healthy work-life balance, it can be a rewarding experience that will serve you well in the future.

Jamie Willis