First Things First


by Cameron Macht

There are just over 200,000 workers in Minnesota between the ages of 14 and 21, comprising about eight percent of the total workforce, according to data compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau. Two industries in Minnesota employ nearly half of all 14- to 21-year-olds.

 

The chart below shows the percentage of Minnesotans age 21 and under employed by industry. In accommodation and food services, nearly 29 percent of all workers were under 21 years of age. In retail trade, that share was nearly 19 percent.  

Table

For many teenagers and young adults, these industries provide a good first job opportunity –perhaps as a cashier, food preparation and serving worker, retail salesperson, front desk clerk, or dishwasher – that helps them gain valuable workplace skills, like customer service, problem-solving and teamwork. These are in-demand skills that can make you more marketable throughout your life.

 

Part-time and summer jobs are a great way for teens to enter the job market for the first time.

 

If you are a teen or student looking for a job, or a parent helping your teen find a job, stay tuned to iSpeak every day next week to help you prepare yourself for the summer job market, learn how to network, find a youth summer employment program, and research future careers.

 

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