Jobs for 14- and 15-Year-Olds

Posted August 16, 2021

Teenagers can find age-appropriate jobs that serve as a source of income and help build character as you gain more independence. The first jobs we have as teenagers help us learn valuable professional skills that will help strengthen the foundation of our careers. There are a variety of industries that have several types of jobs for 14- and 15-year olds. In this article we will discuss some options that teenagers have in terms of employment and help uncover some jobs that suit your interests.

Jobs for 14- and 15-Year-Olds

Exactly how many hours are 14- and 15-year-olds allowed to work?

Depending on your location, there might be limitations in place for the type of work teenagers can perform as well as the number of hours worked within a week. According to the US Department of Labor, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) ensures that "when young people work, the work is safe and does not jeopardize their health, well-being or educational opportunities."

The FLSA enforces the following restrictions on 14 and 15-year-old workers in the US:

  • Young teens cannot work on any job deemed as hazardous. This includes mining, logging, ladder work, warehousing and other similar roles, and any job requiring work with explosives or power saws.
  • On a school day FSLA requires 14- and 15-year olds work no more than 3 hours and on a non-school day only up to 8 hours.
  • Young teens can only work between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. (with the exception of June 1st through Labor Day, when teens can work between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m.)
  • There are some exceptions to the the maximum available work hours when under special circumstances, including participating in a state-sponsored work-study program.

What industries can 14 and 15-year-olds work in?

Teenagers can work in a variety of industries, including retail, assistant work, and food service. Here are a few roles for 14- and 15-year-olds that you might find interesting:

In-person job opportunities:

1. Barista

Average salary: $11 per hour

Job duties: Coffee shops hire Baristas to prepare and serve beverages (such as coffee, espresso and tea), restock materials, answer any questions customers may have about menu items, check customers out using a point of sale cash register and help clean work areas, equipment and customer areas. 

Gratuity: Baristas receive tips at the register or at the pick up window, and usually the tips are pooled and then split although each coffee shop might have different protocols on cash tips. 

Benefits: This job builds communication and hospitality skills that can come in handy in many other jobs down the road.

2. Busser

Average salary: $11 per hour

Job duties: Restaurants hire bussers that are tasked with clearing plates, utensils and drinkware from tables, wiping down surfaces, refilling nonalcoholic beverages for customers, and helping deliver food to tables. Usually bussers do not take or input orders from customers but might help get the tables set up with drinking water and possibly menus. 

Gratuity: Bussers will sometimes get some pooled tips with the kitchen but every restaurant has different policies around tip pools. 

Benefits: This is a great job to do if you are looking for afterschool and evening work, since the dinner rush is usually when bussers are needed the most. 

3. Caddy

Average salary: $14 per hour

Job duties: Caddies are employed by golf courses and country clubs. They assist players by cleaning golf balls, carrying golf bags, refilling and seeding lawn divets, holding flags and sometimes even consulting players on which club to use. 

Gratuity: Caddies are one of the most well tipped jobs that a 14- to 15-year old could have. The more knowledgable or helpful you can be to your golfer the better the tips get, so looking up some play pointers ahead of time can benefit your caddy work.

Benefits: This is a great job for a student who is on a golf team to get more practice in selecting clubs, and to network with pro and amateur golfers. Working tournaments on a weekend is common for caddies that are 14- to 15-years old and a great way to get some exercise outside while also getting paid. 

4. Camp Counselor

Average salary: $9 per hour

Job duties: Camp counselors often help lead hikes, sing-alongs and other camp games and activities.  Counselors learn basic camp duties to help them prepare for a senior counselor position once they are old enough (typically 16–18 years old). 

Gratuity: Camp counselors usually do not receive gratuity from campers or parents but the nice part is all your meals are included and your stay at the camp as a chaperone is a part of the job. 

Benefits: This is a great summer job to have since camps usually end when the school year begins, and being a camp counselor is a fun way to get paid to attend camp. This job builds leadership skills and team building skills that will come in handy when applying for future internships or jobs. 

5. Cashier

Average salary: $12 per hour

Job duties: Retail stores and fast-food restaurants employ cashiers to receive cash, run credit cards, issue receipts and refunds, count money and balance the cash drawer at the end of their shifts.

Gratuity: Cashiers do not commonly receive tips in the retail industry but restaurant and coffee shop cashiers usually split the tips with baristas or kitchen cooks. Each establishment will have different procedures around how and when the tips are collected and distributed throughout the day.

Benefits: This job is great for those interested in handling money, especially if you would like to go into banking one day. It is also a great starting point for those that would like to become a manager or trainer since knowing the POS (Point-of-Sale) system is key to training your staff well.

6. Dog walker

Average salary: $16 per hour

Job duties: Teenagers can start a dog walking service all on their own through word of mouth or by posting information on a flyer in local areas. Or if you prefer working for someone else you can find dog walking services online that can hire you for your specific area. The duties of a dog walker include walking one or multiple dogs depending on the client, cleaning up and disposing of pet waste properly, giving the dog water and sometimes feeding the dog if the owner is away for an extended period of time. 

Gratuity: Some owners will offer a gratuity to their walkers but it is not always expected of them, so don't count on tips from every client unless your company specifically posts expectations around gratuity.  

Benefits: This is a very active job that will allow teens to get exercise while also learning to care for different breeds of dogs. This is a great job for those that would like to go into veterinary science or in becoming a vet tech. It's also a great way to explore entrepreneurship by starting your own makeshift local dog walking service and play with word of mouth, digital, and physical marketing strategies to gain more clients.

7. Grocery bagger

National average salary: $12 per hour

Job duties: Grocery stores hire grocery baggers to quickly organize customers' groceries into bags and if needed carry bags to the car for customers.

Gratuity: Gratuity is not usually expected from customers, however on occasion a customer may offer a tip for carrying their groceries to the car. 

Benefits: This is a simple job that improves customer satisfaction and encourages friendly communication. It keeps teens on their feet and requires problem-solving skills to organize groceries in a way that makes sense and prevents damage to the customer's goods. 

8. Dishwasher

Average salary: $11 per hour

Job duties: Dishwashers are employed at restaurants and are tasked with washing dishes, cookware, and utensils, rolling utensils wrapped in napkins, and setting tables or filling serving stations with clean dishes. They may also perform bussing duties depending on the restaurant.

Gratuity: Dishwashers may or may not split tips with the waiters and cooks. Dishwashers often have slightly higher pay but don’t receive tips since they have little interaction with customers. However, every restaurant is different and may split gratuities amongst everyone or leave it up to the waiter to tip out the bussers and dishwashers.

Benefits: This is a very hands on and repetitive job, dishwashing would be good for someone that wants to work on finding joy in repetition to improve their focus. It is also great for someone that gets satisfaction from cleaning or making things look neat.

9. Host/Hostess

Average salary: $10 per hour

Job duties: Restaurants have hostesses or hosts who are responsible for greeting patrons, making and fulfilling reservations, leading guests to their tables, presenting menus, and sometimes informing customers of the specials of the day. Hosts are also responsible for making sure sections within the restaurant are balanced to prevent overloading servers. 

Gratuity: Most host positions do not offer tips/gratuity.

Benefits: This is a great first time job because the training is simple and low stress. It is a great job to get if you are interested in hospitality, working as a hotel receptionist, or concierge service down the road.

10. Ice cream scooper

Average salary: $12 per hour

Job duties: Ice cream shops hire teenagers to greet customers, give out samples, scoop and make ice cream cones and sundaes, maintain inventory, clean workstations, and floors, and ring up customers. 

Gratuity: Ice cream scoopers usually get tips and encourage tipping by singing songs or ringing bells when customers put cash in the tip jar. This is often collected at the end of each shift and divided up among the workers at that time. 

Benefits: This is a very fun work environment and you get to try new flavors of ice cream to gain knowledge in your area of work, so really it’s a win-win.

11. Theater usher

Average salary: $10 per hour

Job duties: Ushers are hired by theaters to help guests find their seats before and during the show, ensure theater-goers are following the rules, clean up the seating area, watch the doors during the performance, and to be aware of emergency evacuation procedures to help usher guests out of the theater safely if necessary. 

Gratuity: It is not common for ushers to receive tips.

Benefits: This is the perfect opportunity for someone who is interested in music, musical theater, dance, or other performing arts because ushers often get to watch the shows of a variety of performance groups from the back of the theater.

More employment opportunities:

There are other job opportunities out there for teenagers such as working local events like carnivals, community festivals, or holiday attractions. Sometimes just reaching out to neighbors, family members, and friends can lead to jobs like mowing lawns, washing cars, or babysitting. It is a good idea to get some informal work experience like this before applying for a longer-term position so that you have something to put on your resume. Whatever you decide to do, getting some work experience under your belt early on will give you valuable skills and help you earn some money to give you a head start on building up some assets. The work you do in your teens can make you the prime candidate for bigger job opportunities down the road while building character traits that will serve you well in your future career.

The Careerbliss Team

s our #1 priority here at CareerBliss. To help you succeed in your career, we offer a wide variety of tools and resources to help you out along the way. Check out company reviewssalary information, career advice and, of course, millions of jobs on CareerBliss and choose happy today!

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