Coming back to school doesn’t mean students stop working jobs

Jacob Evans, Staff Writer

Many Greeley West students pick up odd jobs over the summer to make money to spend during the school year. Others are less concerned about having extra spending money for lunches or fun with friends, but work to support their family. 

Senior Charisse Myers, who works at the Habitat for Humanity  ReStore, is learning real-life lessons through her job.  Myers said, “I work so I can have money of my own and be more independent.”

Many students’ jobs carry over into the school year and they then become responsible for finding the balance between schoolwork and work schedules. For some, like senior Taylor Vannest, balancing work with school is fairly simple. Vannest works at Freddy’s. If she needs an extra day for an assignment because she works that night, she says that if she asks teachers are happy to help. Vannest said, “Teachers are understanding and accommodating with homework and deadlines for classes.”

Like everything, the pandemic has changed students’ approach to working.  Myers mentioned, “With all of the COVID happening, people have been losing their jobs and some students have had to work to help out with basic needs for the house.”

Myers says that she is grateful to still have a job in a time when so many are unemployed. Myers said that not only does she gain money from work, she also gains time management skills, and that she has learned not to procrastinate on school work. By working she has learned to use time efficiently in order to not fall behind in classes.

Myers wishes her teachers would have more understanding of why students work, and overall have more sympathetic reactions. Myers stated, “None of my West teachers were aware of my schedule for work outside school.”

She wishes that teachers at West would be more like professors she has had in Aims classes she has taken, by treating the students as adults. 

Teachers see work and school as necessary, but think students should have school as their main priority.  IB Coordinator and teacher Ms. Marie Beach said she, “tries to be supportive and to encourage the other teachers to be supportive and flexible.”

However, Beach says that while she understands that realistically families need financial support, “students have their whole life to work ahead of them.” 

With changing times, students have had to adopt more direct roles in providing for their families. And while students continue to focus on their studies, they additionally must navigate the world of work.