Carihi student Levi Myles takes some time to get some work done in the Careers office (F140), where students can get more information on work placements, part time jobs and more. Photo by Jocelyn Diemer/Carihi Mirror

The difficulty of finding a work/school balance

It’s becoming increasingly common for hish schoolers to also be working, but is that a good thing?

Jocelyn Diemer

Carihi Mirror

Part-time jobs are increasingly common among high schoolers, but it can be difficult to find the energy to be both a student and an employee.

Most teenagers who choose to work do so because they want – or need – a source of income, and Carihi student Matthew Rivett is no different.

“I decided to get a job so I’d have money to spend on my hobbies and my truck,” says Rivett. “I need to pay for gas and post-secondary.”

Meanwhile, Daniela Hernandez says that although she has taken this semester off to focus on school work and extra-curriculars, she still believes that part-time employment is valuable.

“I do think it is important for students to have the experience of a job before they graduate,” says Hernandez. “I am currently planning on getting a job during my second semester, when my course load isn’t as heavy.”

Andria Dirom, who coordinates Carihi’s Work Experience program, agrees that having a part-time job can be very beneficial for students.

“Students can learn about safety and interpersonal relationships, all while acquiring more credits towards graduation,” Dirom says.

There are definite financial and experiential advantages of working part-time, but many students find themselves overwhelmed at the task of balancing their school work and their job.

Megan Hancock, who worked throughout Grade 11 and chose to take her grad year off from doing so, says that she felt worn out when she was trying to succeed at both her job and her school work.

“It’s hard,” says Hancock. “Going to work and then coming home and doing hours of homework is draining.”

Rivett agrees, adding the hardest thing for him is trying to keep up on homework while still getting enough sleep.

Hernandez says that reducing mental and emotional strain played a large part in her decision not to work this semester.

“At the moment I am taking three academic classes,” says Hernandez. “If I had a job, I think I would be juggling too many things, and I’d be more stressed out than I already am.”

However, there are supports in place for students experiencing job-related stress.

Many students find themselves feeling exhausted because they are too afraid to ask for time off, especially during busy times such as assessment week.

“Open communication is key,” Dirom says, “Kids don’t know that they can say no. If a student anticipates a heavier time [with school work] they should plan ahead and ask for the weekend off.”

Carihi students looking for more information about part-time jobs, the Work Experience program, or employment opportunities can visit the Careers office, room F140.

Carihi Mirror

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