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Portage Township Media

Portage Township Media

PHS students reflect on working, responsibility, and teen life


For Portage High School sophomore Jazmin Castro and junior Maniyah Drake, balancing work with other factors of their life can be challenging, but they believe that it’s important.


“I wanted to gain work experience and work for my own things. I wanted to be able to have some responsibility for myself,” Drake stated. 


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“What made me want to get a job was more for the money, but partially for the experience of working with others,” Castro said.


Being a teen can be quite challenging. Today, students with jobs not only have school, but also family responsibilities and extracurriculars to juggle at the same time. Casto works as a cashier, hostess and answers phones. She enjoys her job but also finds it difficult balancing her personal life, work and school especially as a young and growing teenager. 


“The hours that I work can also be challenging with working late and not having a lot of time to myself after balancing work and school,” says Castro. 


Both students spoke on the environment at their workplace. Workplace atmosphere and how you are approached and favored can also affect the overall experience at work.


“At my job everyone is so kind, helpful and understanding. They are also around my age so that helps,” Drake said.


Castro echoed a similar statement, though she runs into some issues with those who have more experience working.


“I am treated well by my manager, but certain staff who have more experience are rude,” Castro said, highlighting the issues younger people face when entering the workforce.


Co-workers, customers and employers play a big part in your work experience. Whether it’s good or bad, both students push through to strive and work hard at their job. This is teaching them responsibility, resilience and how to live in the real world where people show their true colors.


Getting your first job as a teenager can be a rewarding experience, but it can also be challenging. It’s important to learn how to balance work and school, manage your time effectively, and stay focused on your goals. As Drake and Castro have shown, with determination and hard work, you can achieve success in both your job and your studies.


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