Don’t let your teen fool you into thinking he needs at least two months of sleeping until noon and playing video games to recover from the rigors of the past school year.

The National Association of Colleges and Employers’ Job Outlook 2018 indicates many college graduates have never held a real job, and are hitting the job market unprepared to meet employer expectations. While 89.4 percent of recent grads rated themselves as proficient in their work ethic and professionalism, only 42.5 percent of surveyed employers shared that view.
So call it a summer job, call it professional development, call it whatever you want – but Junior needs a summer jobs, and we have a few ideas.

Lake Lanier Islands

If you’re not allowed to spend your summer lounging around by the water, the next best thing has to be a job at the water (remember the summer that the Saved By The Bell gang spent at the Malibu Sands Beach Club? Or for you Millennials, High School Musical). If your teen is okay with forsaking Kelly Kapowski and musical numbers, Lake Lanier Islands is looking for kids to work in the restaurants, at events, as lifeguards and pool attendants, with kids, at the stables and more!

Gwinnett Stripers

Take them out to the ball game – and make them earn a paycheck so they can buy their own peanuts and Cracker Jacks. The Gwinnett Stripers (née Braves) have a plethora of baseball-adjacent summer jobs, including being an usher, bat boy, and of course, selling peanuts and Cracker Jacks. Our guess is that the team isn’t looking for a 12th-string first baseman, but it can’t hurt to ask.


As for me and my house, we will be sending our children to Chick-fil-A for jobs. Besides the many scholarship opportunities and having a human in the house who smells of waffle fries, a summer at the Home of the Original Chicken Sandwich comes with even more intangible benefits. Have you ever been served by a teenager at Chick-fil-A that didn’t address you respectfully, making eye-contact, and with confidence? I don’t know if Chick-fil-A hires kids who are already like that, or if they train them, but I’m willing to hedge my bets and send my smart alleck teen there to learn how to speak to adults. And a kid that can make the Lord’s waffle fries in your kitchen is the gift that keeps on giving. (Amen.)

Camp Counselor

Even if your summers were spent watching The Price is Right with your Grandma (don’t forget to spay and neuter your pets), everyone knows what summer camp is like thanks to Salute Your Shorts, Wet Hot American Summer and Friday the 13th. Even if your teen isn’t interested in being with kids 24/7 during her precious summer break, she can still be a camp counselor for Gwinnett County Parks & Rec. This position orients, monitors and leads children through the day-to-day operation of day camp at multiple Gwinnett County Parks, including set up and clean-up of equipment and supplies for camp activities, helping to develop and implement lesson plans, and leading various games and crafts. Counselors must be at least 16 years old, CPR and first aid certified and able to swim.