With high unemployment in the area, are summer jobs for area teenagers drying up?
Yes. That was the general consensus Friday expressed by several students at Brainerd High School. The students, who have found a summer job, said they started their job searches earlier than they have had in the past.
BHS senior Madisyn Hilborn began looking in January for a spring/summer job.
"I applied at a lot of restaurants in the area and went to a couple of golf courses," said Hilborn, who landed a part-time job at The Legacy in April. She also is a lifeguard at Whipple Beach.
Hilborn said she's heard college students who are coming home to Brainerd this summer are having a difficult time finding work.
Randie Swanson, another senior, has two part-time jobs, but said her younger brother has had a hard time finding a job. Swanson said her brother applied at many businesses in the area but has not had a call back yet.
Brainerd High School juniors Dillon Finger (left), Renee Kvale, Samantha Dren and Jordan VanSickle sat Friday on the grass in front of the high school. The juniors each had a different experience while searching for a job for the summer. Brainerd Dispatch/Steve Kohls» Purchase reprints of this photo.
Ben Urness, a senior, said he applied for seven or eight jobs and found that the positions filled up fast.
"I'd call the places I applied for to see if I got the job, but I didn't," said Urness. "It was tough. I finally got a job two weeks ago at Billy Bones Raceway in Baxter."
BHS junior Jenna Riley said a lot of her friends are having a hard time finding a job because of competition in the work force. Riley also said there were positions her friends held last year no longer exist or the business has since closed.
Samantha Dren, junior, has a part-time job, but she's looking for a full-time job. Dren said she thought she had found a full-time job for the summer, but recently found out that the manager who hired her lost his job, which meant the position for her also was eliminated.
Jordan VanSickle, junior, was able to get a summer job out at Vacationland Family Fun Park in Baxter.
"I applied for it and got it," said VanSickle. "I worked there last summer and the position was open so it wasn't tough to get it."
Dillon Finger, a junior, works at Cub Foods part time, but he's looking for a second job to save money for college.
"I've been having troubles finding another job," said Finger.
Renee Kvale, a junior, said she recently was promoted at her job and got a raise. Kvale has been working at McDonald's in Baxter for two years and her new title is crew manager.
"They are hiring," Kvale said for the students who are looking for a job.
JENNIFER STOCKINGER may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 855-5851.
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