Home > Uncategorized > Quartz Staffers Underscore the Lessons Learned in Summer Employment

Quartz Staffers Underscore the Lessons Learned in Summer Employment

August 4, 2018

I’ve long believed, to paraphrase Robert Fulghum, “All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Part-Time Work“. And because of this, I am saddened to read that the percentage of teenagers working part-time jobs has declined over the past several years, from as high as 58% in the mid 1970s to 51% in the early 2000s to 35% today. The chart below depicts the decline.Like me, Sarah Todd, one of the writers at Quartz lament this development as well… and to illustrate the personal impact of part-time employment on the lives of her colleagues, she invited them to share the lessons they learned from part-time summer work.

As one who ran my own “business” mowing lawns in West Chester PA and working on an assembly line in a small factory in that town owned by a friend’s father, I appreciated the opportunity to appreciate the benefits of self-employment and the camaraderie of working on a team. I especially appreciated the opportunity to earn enough to pay for my freshman year in college and have enough money left over to but record albums and guitar strings and equipment… and enough time to play in the couch softball league and haunt the outdoor basketball courts.

I don’t earn money for my current “part time work”, I still I enjoy the meditative quality and sense of accomplishment I get when I mow the grass on my home and the camaraderie that results from serving on volunteer non-profit boards. And here’s an imponderable: Would I mow my own lawn and volunteer to serve on committees if I hadn’t experienced the joys of part-time work.


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