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Job Openings for Teens

In an economy that has forced otherwise qualified college students and retirees to apply for traditional high school jobs, teenagers are finding it increasingly difficult to land gainful employment. Given the current competition from seemingly better qualified applicants,teenage applicants must put in a great amount of effort in order to convince employers that they are capable of being reliable employees. Fortunately, it's still possible to score a great job. You'll just want to keep the following in mind as you sift through the available job openings for teens.

Volunteer Experience

There are few things interviewers like to see more than teenage applicants willing to show initiative. The easiest way to prove your willingness to go the extra mile? Rack up a few volunteer hours. Whether you assist in a nursing home or pull weeds at the local park, you'll gain valuable marketability,not to mention a handful of references. Also, if you're currently in the midst of the great college hunt, you can think of this as killing two birds with one stone. Volunteer experience is an important part of any college application. U.S. News and World Report points toYouth Action Net and the Partnership for Public Service Fellowship as just two of many organizations offering generous scholarships to students with exceptional volunteer backgrounds.

Top-Notch References

If you lack volunteer experience or past employment, your best bet for gaining work will involve your ability to provide decent references. Have you built up a good rapport with one of your teachers? How about a coach or adviser? Any of these individuals has the potential to make an excellent reference. Best avoided for the required reference list: anyone in your immediate family or circle of friends. Ideally, your reference will have witnessed you taking responsible action of some sort and can report on it to the investigating interviewer. Be sure to notify anyone you include on the reference list, as some people prefer to have time to prepare their thoughts before answering recruiter questions.

Interview Confidence

The recruiter at your business of interest checked out your application and liked it! You've cleared the first hurdle on the path to high school employment, but you're nowhere near the finish line. For many teens, the interview is by far the most nerve-wracking portion of the process. Unfortunately, if you are dreading your interview, your nervousness might show. Your interviewer recognizes just how difficult the interview process can be for inexperienced teens and will likely cut you a bit of slack.

However, if you are able to get past your worries and deliver an impressive performance, the interviewer will appreciate your ability to perform under pressure, which is a quality always valued in teenage employees. To achieve that perfect interview, experts writing in the Telegraph suggest completing a mock-up, either by visualizing the perfect interview experience in your own head or by acting it out with the help of family or friends.

Job openings for teens elicit more competition than ever before, which is why, come the big interview, you need to be on your A game. Prepare for a confident and professional appearance, and you'll increase your chances of landing that hot job.