Getting Your First Job, Part 2

Getting your first job is not easy without help. If you are still in school, you need to be 14 in order to get working papers and you have to have a job offer before you can get the working papers. There are limitations on the type of job you can get because of health and safety reasons and on the number of hours that you can work. Parents may add some additional restrictions on the job search.

When I worked in a middle school with 7th and 8th grade students, almost every student that got a job knew someone that helped them find that job. There isn’t a formal listing of jobs for middle school and high school students, but schools do support the concept of students working during their senior year if they have completed all of there required classes and the school has a program to allow students to leave school during the day to work, Once again, there is very little in the way of formal listings and either the student, the school or the parents need to search for openings. Students can also try to find and after school or summer job.

I am currently volunteering my time to help special needs students find job opportunities, but the process is pretty much the same for all students that want a job. First time job seekers may have a long term career in mind, but they lack the educational requirements, work experience and probably independent transportation means to be successful in their search. Most have not completed an employment application, have no experience to include, have never had an employment interview, don’t know what minimum wage is currently and many have not learned to use cursive writing to sign the application. Fortunately, the students that I am working with have been through a program to address each of these issues.

The students that I am working with also are in a program that will pay for 100 hours of work and are covered by the agency’s insurance. They will also receive assistance with their orientation and support during their time with the company that allows them to work at their site. I will be contacting different local companies and I have already contacted two large companies that require corporate approval. What I could really use is a network of locals that could give me some leads on possible work / training sites. If you have any leads, e-mail me at or call me at 856 287 8422.

Published by


I have a BA in Psychology and a teaching certificate as a Special Education teacher. I have a MA in Student Personnel Services and I recently retired from my position as a Guidance Counselor. I have been active on advisory boards concerning disability issues for over 25 years. I also have over 25 years of business experience in Human Resources and Operations Management.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s