Teens: Get a job

When most teens think of summer, the beach or their bed comes to mind. Though for some, students working is the ideal pastime for summer.
A majority of students have summer jobs including senior Amber Untch who works at the St. James sports, wellness, and entertainment center.
Untch has been working at St. James for nine months. She was recommended for the job by a friend.
“This is my first job and I love it,” Untch said, “The interview was pretty easy for the most part. They asked me about my availability and hours. They also asked how I could help their company.”
Untch gets paid $10 an hour and receives a free membership to Saint James.
There are many businesses in the Annandale area that are hiring including, Dairy Queen, Swiss Bakery and Lake Accotink.
Though the most common job during the summer is working at pools. Jobs at public pools are very easy to get for teens and the pay is modest.
Most pools will pay minimum wage to teen employees which is $7.25. The public pools around AHS are the North Springfield Swim Club, the Springfield Swimming Club, the Annandale Swim and Tennis Club, and the Canterbury Woods Swim and Tennis Club.
Summer jobs and year-long jobs are important for teens because it teaches them hard work and the value of a dollar. However, the number of teens who work has been decreasing in recent years.
According to the United States Department of Labor, the percentage of teens in the workforce in 2009 was 37.5 percent, but in 2015 the percentage of teens was only 34.3 percent.
There is an explanation for this. The United States Department of Education reports an increase in summer school attendance around high school aged children.
It is important for teenagers to get an education, but college tuition is increasing. Many teens get jobs to help pay for their college education.
Another common job around teens is yard work or babysitting. The amount of money you get depends on the employer. Junior Izzy Steiner babysits and does yard work for her immediate neighbors.
“I have been babysitting for about eight months, and I have been doing yard work for a couple of years now,” Steiner said.
Steiner earns $25 for two hours of babysitting and $25 for yard work.
When babysitting, Steiner’s responsibilities include playing with the toddler, changing her diaper, and feeding the child dinner.
“When I do yard work for my neighbors, I normally mow the lawn, water their flowers, and pull out weeds. But sometimes they ask me to do other things like cleaning out the shed, laying mulch and planting flowers,” Steiner said.
Jobs are very important because they bring skills that many will need in the real world. Teens need to learn how to be responsible with the money they earn and jobs are a easy way to do that.

Trea Turner visits AHS camp

With the days remaining in the school year numbered, students and staff are beginning to prepare for summer.

Whether it be sports camps, academic schools, summer jobs or elaborate vacations, this summer break is due to be an eventful one.

On July 30, a youth baseball camp will be held at AHS that will feature Washington Nationals star player, Trea Turner.

“Overall I think it’s really cool that the camp will be happening at our school,” head baseball coach Christopher Bagot said.

ProCamps, which is affiliated with Turner, planned on holding a camp in a FCPS and AHS was chosen as that school.

The one-day camp will be held on AHS school grounds for boys and girls grades first through eighth.

Camp coaches along with Turner will provide hands-on instruction and tips to all attendees of the camp through stations, drills and contests.

“I am hoping that some of our coaches and players will be able to volunteer and help out at that camp,” Bagot said.

Despite the nearing conclusion of the school year, that will not mark the end of learning for a number of students.

After a rigorous year of scrupulous note-taking, studying and test-taking, junior Nahom Dagnachew will continue learning over the summer in a math, science and technology program.

“I already applied to Governor’s School in tenth grade and got denied,” Dagnachew said. “So to get accepted this time feels redeeming.”

The application process is very selective and particular as only about 160 applicants are accepted every year.

Among the included requirements are two recommendations, a resume and an essay. From these factors, a committee of judges decides whether or not to accept applicants. The applicants are first selected among their classmates at their school, then they move on to county and regional levels.

At Lynchburg College, all acceptees will be taking college level courses specific to their designated program. Registration for the classes open a few weeks before Governor’s school and are all heavily STEM-based.

“I hope to gain valuable knowledge from the field-specific courses,” Dagnachew said. “I also hope to gain some experience in the college life since I will be staying there for a month.”

A number of students will be participating in other academic programs over the summer.
Junior Ruth Seyoum will take part in the ALA Girls State program.

The one-week program that begins on June 17 and ends on June 23. Throughout the week, the girls that are accepted will regularly develop their leadership skills and will be provided a better understanding of the government process.

“As I went through the application process I realized that I could learn more about the way government works and gain a lot of leadership skills,” Seyoum said.

The application process also requires the creation of a resume and a written response to a prompt.
Part of the experience at Girls State is that those attending are able to campaign in mock elections and political parties and assume the roles of government leaders to enhance their understanding of the functions of the government.

The counterpart to the Girls State program is Boys State, a program that introduces very similar concepts to the students attending.

Included in the Boys State program along with partaking in simulated governments, are several activities such as sports, lectures and seminars.

Junior Zuhair Rahman was among those accepted to the program from AHS.

“Knowing the reputation and quality of the Boys State program, I was very excited that I got accepted,” Rahman said.

All attending Boys and Girls State programs will have the opportunity to build-up a better understanding of roles of government and improve leadership and confidence skills.

“I hope to learn more through participating in the activities at the camp,” Rahman said. “I’m looking forward to having a unique experience to start off the summer.”

Staff all around the school are also preparing for an action-packed summer themselves.
Health and PE teacher John Jennison will be instructing another summer of Behind the Wheel classes with the FCPS Adult Center of Education (ACE).

Jennison has been working with ACE as a Behind the Wheel instructor for about three years, working over the summer as well as during the school year.

In addition to teaching Health and PE, Jennison teaches in-class drivers education as well.

Behind the Wheel is a seven-day course that covers all basic maneuvers required to earn a license.

“My favorite part of it is always taking kids on the highway for their first time,” Jennison said. “It gets exciting because some of them have never been on the highway and aren’t comfortable with it at first.”

Other staff members will spend this summer relaxing after a long year of work.

ESOL teacher Kate Mounteer will spend a portion of her summer on a Rhine River cruise to celebrate her 25th wedding anniversary.

The cruise will last seven nights starting in Zurich, Switzerland and ending in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

“I am really excited because I have never travelled on the Rhine River or seen any of the cities we will be stopping at,” Mounteer said.

Multiple stops will be made on the cruise in villages and cities. Passengers will be able to view historical sites as well as famous landmarks.

“I love seeing the historical towns and architecture,” Mounteer said.

With all that is occurring, students and staff alike will be busy this summer with events and programs of their interest.