Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Help a Mom: Summer jobs for teens

Posted April 17, 2012

Here's an email from a mom looking for a summer job for her teenager:

I'm looking for a summer job for my 15-year-old. All summer jobs seem to be geared for at risk youths or kids living in the city of Raleigh. Please help! Clayton, Garner = nothing. If you don't live in Raleigh, the Summer Youth Employment program is off limits. I have tried everywhere.

Our correspondent is referring to Raleigh's summer jobs program for teens, which I wrote about earlier this year. The application deadline was March 28.

Do you have advice for this mom? Please share your tips in the comments box below. (If you don't see the comments box below, you'll need to log in or sign up for a WRAL account. You can do that by going to the top of the page and clicking on either "log in" or "register").

Help a Mom features questions from readers every Wednesday. If you have a question that you'd like to ask Go Ask Mom readers, click here to email it to me.


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  • shall6 Apr 18, 2012

    From my inbox:

    I had the same issue when I lived out at 40/42. I found the Northwest Youth Corp.Our oldest son still has friendships he made while working in the great outdoors. He saw some of the most beautiful parts of the northwest, learned responsiblity and made friends. I am happy to answer any questions about our experience. Here is the address:


  • Mom2two Apr 18, 2012

    If the sole purpose is to make money, then it will be tough, since she is not yet 16. However, in the long run, she should take something that she really cares about and turn it into a summer-long volunteer experience. Loves animals? Volunteer at the shelter. Has a place in her heart for the elderly? Volunteer at an assistend living facility and just visit or play games with them. Many areas that cater to young, low-income children, may welcome an extra hand to play with preschoolers in a head-start-type preschool. Love to read/go to the library? Volunteer to help shelve books. Love the museum? Volunteer there. This could then lead to other paying jobs down the road.

  • backhome Apr 18, 2012

    This is so interesting. When I was fifteen (about 14 years years ago), it wasn't that hard to find a summer job. Everybody had one. We babysat or were lifeguards at the pool. Some people did landscaping with companies who hired for summer help. Others worked at grocery stores or fast food restaurants. Surely it can't be that hard for teenagers to find a summer job...

  • americaneel Apr 18, 2012

    Good grief...Now mother's are writing WRAL for help in finding their daughter a job. Tell her my advice is to try harder

  • MrsPage1989 Apr 18, 2012

    madamwuf; there is nothing wrong with a parent trying to help their child look for a job.

  • hihuwatlu Apr 18, 2012

    Mcdonalds and chick-fil-a both hire some 15yr olds. Hours are limited because of child labor laws. I've been through this with my daughter and it is tough finding anything. It's even hard to find volunteer activities for teens under 16. 13-15yr olds are too old for sitters and too young for most jobs so it's hard to keep them busy and out of trouble especially during the summers.

  • arahimib Apr 18, 2012

    There are camp counselor jobs in Garner. Personally 15 is young to be looking for a job, especially in this economy. I would try babysitting or some type of lessons- dance, piano, etc.

    Here's a link to camp counselor job in Garner

  • snowl Apr 18, 2012

    I'd say it's not what 'you' know, but 'who your daughter knows'. My kids both got jobs (when 15) with restaurants, because they were referred by a friend at school or church group. Sorry, cannot help more.

  • TeenDad2electricboogaloo Apr 18, 2012

    Be a soccer ref or scorekeeper for kids, quite a bit of money actually.

  • madamwuf Apr 18, 2012

    My first question is why she is looking for her daughter and her daughter is not taking the lead in the job search. Her best bet, though it is likely late now, is to serve as a counselor in training at a local camp, as it lines her up for future employment in the summers to come. My first job was helping around a barn at 15 and that is still common for that age. Restaurant hostessing is also common for places that serve alcohol (as she's not old enough to be a server), but being a waitress at a local Andy's or similar restaurant is an option.