School alone can be stressful enough, but imagine trying to keep grades up while also having to spend 40 hours of the week working. This is the issue that many students, mainly seniors and juniors, face. With college approaching and senior events, many students feel compelled to look for a job to save up to pay for things like prom tickets or college. This can cause an unhealthy amount of stress, especially at a school as academically rigorous as Port of LA High School (POLAHS).
College-bound senior Kenny Moore has been working at Pizza Hut since the end of his junior year. He decided to begin working in order to help his mom. This, however, affects his sleeping schedule. He barely gets any sleep trying to keep up with his job and school work. He wishes he had more time to hang out with friends.
“I dislike working as a student. It is difficult and tiring, but in life, we all have to do things we dislike, so I will just have to get used to it,” said Moore.
Senior Maritza Rendon works 40 hours a week at Sizzler. She began working this year because, as a legal adult, she realized the importance of independence from her parents. Working allows her to buy whatever she needs without having to ask her parents to pay. She has been saving money for a road trip after graduation. Rendon expresses the stress of coming home from work at 11 p.m. and having to stay up until 2 a.m. finishing homework. Although she is tired, she is happy to be able to maintain a 3.5 GPA.
“I love working because I’m not at home, I’m out doing something with my life and making money,” said Rendon. She adds that the downside of working is missing out on free time or spending time with friends and family.
Junior Kimberly Albarran has recently started working at Las Palmas, a restaurant located in the city of Carson. She decided to begin working when she noticed her parents struggling as a result of her older sister going to college. She realized her job would allow her to help her parents financially.
“My parents said I didn’t need to, but I thought it would really take some weight off their shoulders,” said Albarran.
–Vania Patino, Jorge Grijalva and Damaris Morales