The best summer jobs for teens

A young man arranging beach chairs and umbrellas at a resort.

Summer jobs for teens are out there, but get ready to hustle. (Photo Credit: CC BY-ND/Longwood Events)

The recession has made getting a job more difficult for everyone, but if you’re a teenager looking for summer jobs, the competition can be overwhelming. Nothing ventured, nothing gained still applies, however – even at minimum wage. Here are some hot summer jobs that typically employ younger, less experienced workers.

The kids are alright, thanks to the babysitter

Baby sitting and nanny positions will always need to be filled, and responsible, energetic young people who remain cool under fire are a good fit. Laura Davis, owner of College Nannies & Tutors franchises in three states told Bankrate that her company places hundreds of teens in such summer jobs. Another company named has connections with thousands of local colleges that help connect prospective caregivers with families.

Make it a Meatballs summer

There are typically jobs available at summer camps for kids, including day camps, weeklong or for the entire summer season. If a teen is active and outgoing, teaching children about camping or canoeing can be a breeze. According to Sandy Blondin of Fox Valley Special Recreation Association of Aurora, Ill., there are numerous benefits for teens beyond a paycheck.

“Being on a summer day camp staff offers important skills in team building, leadership, problem-solving and child development,” she said.

Check out websites like American Camp Association, Summer Camp Jobs and Camp Channel for links to summer camp jobs for teens.

Test the waters of being a lifeguard

Warm summer temperatures mean that beaches, water parks and public pools around the country will be open for business. Career websites like Simply Hired have more than 1,000 summer jobs listed for lifeguards, and that’s just one site. For teens who are strong swimmers and have certifications in CPR and first aid, spending golden summer days by the ocean or pool is a slam dunk. The key is to get started now.

“These numbers are promising for those looking for employment this summer,” says Daniel Greenberg, chief marketing officer of Simply Hired.

Summer amusement at the park

Summer is the busy season for most amusement parks in the U.S., and seasonal jobs must be filled. According to Bankrate, Six Flags Great America near Chicago hires 3,200 season employees for groundskeeping, ticket sales and entertainment. Disney and other chains look to fill similar positions. Free park admission is typically a benefit of these summer jobs.

Work retail, get a mall discount

Summer hiring for retail work has begun early this year, so jump on the opportunity now. Teens hang out at the mall, so why not get paid for it? Traditionally, larger malls hire a few thousand teens for summer jobs, although the recession may force some older workers into such jobs. Learning sales and improving social skills are two benefits of mall work for teens. The customary mall discount may be more immediately appreciated, however.


Summer Camp Jobs

Need a summer job? Try a job fair

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