Students reflect on beneficial job experiences


Courtesy of Harry Halsted

Harry Halsted is one of many students on campus with a job, which offers students real world opportunities to apply their skills.

It seems like students are always short on cash.  Apart from a small allowance, most students at Palo Alto High School have no source of income.  With more money, students could drive wherever they want and eat at Town and Country every day.  Who wouldn’t want that?

Believe it or not, there is a way to earn more much needed money.  It is called a job.  A job is a paid position of regular employment.  So, it’s like being a student — showing up every day, doing work — except for the wages.

Some students are ahead of the rest of us and have discovered the secret of paid labor.  If you have ever seen someone flaunting their fancy new purchases around campus, wearing designer clothes or eating delicious meals, chances are that person has a job.

“[My job] is a good source of income to balance out my spending,” senior Theodore Zaharias said.

Zaharias works at the counter at Pizza My Heart, cutting, heating and serving pizza by the slice to accommodate the customer’s various and unique needs and desires for their Pizza My Heart experience. He works three to five days a week on the busy days, which are usually Fridays and weekends.

“It feels great to have more money in my wallet as well as in the bank,” Zaharias said. “Now I can even start doing different things with my income such as investing and saving.”

Another student in the workplace is sophomore Ciara Bleahen, who works at an an art class across the street from Addison Elementary School, called Art Works Studios, twice a week.

Bleahen helps set up classes, picks students and children up from Addison and assists students with their projects.

“It’s a lot of fun,” Bleahen said.  “The students are really nice and surprisingly well behaved.  I either put the money towards college or a camera that I’m saving up for.”

According to Bleahen, her job is helping her pursue her dreams because, “you really can’t do anything in this world without money.”

Although these students seem to have found jobs to pay the bills and give them pleasure, they concede that not all students are suited for the rigors of the working world.

“Like many other things, jobs have their pros and cons, but in the end it’s a great opportunity to meet new people, build character and be a dynamic part of the community,” Zaharias said.

Bleahen has similar advice for other Paly students looking for job opportunities.

“It depends on how much time you have,” Bleahen said.  “The job must be something that you enjoy, and something that you’re willing to dedicate time to, otherwise there is no point getting a job.  This is also the time to test out your future plans, so if it takes multiple horrible jobs to find the one you like, then by all means, go for it.  However, it makes no sense to make your life miserable for a little extra pocket money.”

Zaharias also offered some final advice for the young students aspiring to emulate his success in the workplace.

“It’s up to you, and I firmly believe that you know best for yourself,” Zaharias said.