QUESTION

Research indicates that 90% of adolescents hold some type of formal job during high school.  Identify cultural and societal reasons for this high adolescent employment rate.  Also discuss some of the positive and negative outcomes for adolescents who work long hours and what they spend their money on.

ANSWER

      Adolescent Psychology 

Introduction

        Truly, most of the adolescents in developed and developing economies hold some kind of employment when they are still pursuing high school education. The contribution to the above fact is due to the cultural background of the teenagers, the society in which they live and the economic status of a state. Seeking employment while studying exposes the adolescents to some positive and negative effects. The main emphasis will be on the positive and negative effects for the teenagers who work for long hours considering they are still in high school.

Cultural Reasons

       Factually, culture is continuously evolving; thus moving forward rather than backward. Hence, new culture has to be adopted by all of the people in the population regardless of their age, gender or nationality. One of the cultures of the 21st century is the culture where each and every person feels some sense of pride when they make an income of their own. With one’s self-made income, then an individual has the autonomy to make choices on how to spend the earned money. When it comes to high school going adolescents, most of them are under the care of their parents and guardians; hence money given is dictated on how they will spend. Most of these adolescents are not of a similar opinion when parents tell them how to use their money, thus in an effort to avoid being dictated, adolescents choose to find formal employment where they make money from their own sweat; hence the parents have little or no say on spending process of the earned cash ( Manning, Baruth & Lee 2017). 

Societal Reasons

       Modern day society is quite unique from the way the society was set up in the past. A lot of reasons can be given to explain these differences, but of concern are the reasons why the adolescents seek employment. To begin with, modern day community is faced with a lot of economic constraints. For most of the high school students, the economic constraints usually hits them hard. The reason is that parents or guardians cannot cater to all needs, wants and luxuries of students. According to Manning, Baruth & Lee 2017, financial constraints force the parents to limit their spending on the adolescents’ basic needs. On the adolescents part, they don’t feel satisfied with the provision of basic needs; hence some of the high school students have to go overboard and get a way on how to meet their other wants and desires. Left with no option, most of the students are forced to consider whether to engage in crime or employment to make extra cash. The greatest percentage opts to seek formal employment. Another societal reason is the desire for students to be self-dependent at an early age. The fact is supported by avoiding controlling measures instituted by parents once they issue pocket money to students. Finally, the issue of peer pressure plays a part too. In the case, one sees fellow friends are seeking side hustles while in school, the friends will influence him/her to also join the club of searching for side employment.

Spending of earned money

      Money earned by the adolescents is spent in a number of ways, both positive and negative. Some of the positive ways in which the money is spent include, a small percentage uses the money to pay for their education, empower their personal life by buying items which are beneficial to them such as cars, houses, and clothing. The highest percentage of adolescents spend their money in a negative way. For instance, in economies where most of the high school adolescents are working, consumption of illegal drugs and alcohol is on the rise. This is because readily available cash influences teenagers to spend cash on fun activities. Also, a small percentage use money earned to buy weapons and start engaging in crime to make a larger fortune.

Advantages for adolescents in high school who work for long hours

      The main advantage is that the longer the hours one works, the higher the income they are set to receive. The high income on its own is an advantage; however, the spending of the money matters a lot, especially with the students. For those who are wise enough, they make good use of their money in empowering their lives and doing what is of importance to them. Secondly, some of the adolescents become self-independent, to some extent, others go further and move out of their parent’s house and live on their own. By doing this, they ease the parents’ burden when attending to them, especially if they are raised together with other offsprings. Further, self-dependency prepares the adolescents for future employment life when they grow older (Gillman, Dworkin & Larson 143-157).

Disadvantages

      The main disadvantage is that, in the first place, they work for long hours, yet they are still in school. This means, even during school days, these adolescents work for long hours and receive little or no sleep, which affects their studies. Additionally, working long hours translates to poor attention during class time; thus overall performance is affected negatively. Studying at the same time working is the leading cause of poor performance in economies where most of the school going teenagers work. Finally, the student’s brains are not well developed to cope with long hours they are subjected to at workstations.

                                             Work Cited

Gillman, Sally, Jodi Dworkin, and Reed Larson. “Facilitating adolescents’ constructive use of time in one-parent families.” Conditions for Optimal Development in Adolescence. Psychology Press, 2017. 143-157.

Manning, M. Lee, Leroy G. Baruth, and G. Lea Lee. Multicultural education of children and adolescents. Taylor & Francis, 2017.