Whistle While You Work.

As the fall season comes to a close, basketball season begins to start and students decide whether to do a sport, or instead have a job during the winter. A job can be a strain or it can be very beneficial in the life of a high school student.

“Since I don’t do a sport, I can obviously spend more time focusing on homework and work at the same time. If I was in a sport, I wouldn’t be able to work as much because it would take up the majority of my time,” junior Zoe Miller said.

Not doing a sport in the winter can also help out your boss when it comes to working more hours and having more time to be available.

“It really helps with availability and needing to cover for other people and it also makes you more reliable,” junior Jillian Millhouse said. “At Dairyland, we really have a family atmosphere and it’s really fun to work there since we all have each others backs.”

Doing a sport can make a student physically and mentally exhausted so sometimes doing homework and maybe even a job can be difficult.

“I feel like being in a sport physically exhausts you,” sophomore Alaina Madden said. “A  job does that too, but a lot of times it’s not as physically exhausting because I do have more energy and I’m able to get my homework done.”

Some students have to pay for expensive things such as a car, insurance, food, and bills which can be hard when you have limited time on top of school.

“I did volleyball in the beginning of the year and so now that I’m not doing a sport, I get more hours which means more money which is nice because then I can stay on top of paying my car off,” sophomore Rylee Boeken said. “I can also pay for my insurance and I have more money to go and do fun stuff with my friends.”

Having a job can be really beneficial when it comes to important skills for the future. It can build your character and make you more responsible.

“I’ve learned how to manage people and be in charge of a shift and be a problem solver. Sometimes in a rush, it’s really hard and you have to do your job and you have to help lead others,” senior Lauren Schueren said. “It’s taught me a lot about work ethic and managing my time. I guess when I become an adult, I’ll know kind of what to do.”

Managing your time can be a struggle when you have activities and clubs outside of school so learning to prioritize your time is an important aspect when it comes to a job.

“My job helps me with time management because sometimes I will get super stacked and I’ll have a lot to do,” Miller said. “So now I have to learn to section out stuff so I have time to prioritize.”

Homework is hard to manage. Sports can occasionally get in the way of that, but having a job can give you an opportunity to finish your assignments.

“At my job, we’re allowed to work on homework if our area is clean and no one is at the counters so that’s a really big help so I get a lot of my homework done,” Millhouse said. “I also don’t go in every single day as I would for sports so it makes it easier.”

Occasionally, a job can give students less time to do their homework and stay on top of their responsibilities.

“ I have less time for homework because I work later than a normal sports practice would go. Sports usually last around two to two and a half hours rather than a job which can last from four to five hours at a time,” junior Jade Krab said. “I also work the weekends so it makes it difficult to find time to get it done then and finish my responsibilities on top of that.”

Listening and being a hard worker are important qualities to have as an employee when it comes to customer service and doing your job efficiently and effectively.

“I’ve learned how to listen because when I take people’s orders, not getting it right or messing up a little detail can ruin their night or they’re okay with it and it can ruin your tip so listening is obviously a really big thing and it teaches you to listen a little bit closer,” Boeken said. “Honestly, it’s more than just the money thing. I think it can benefit you further down the road with having job experience and being able to work with people you wouldn’t want to work with or being able to work with people and getting close with them.”

Working with difficult people can be hard but it can also teach you how to be a team player and work as a group. Without teamwork, the whole business could fall apart.

“I’ve learned how to have teamwork,” junior Brett Riffel said. “I’ve learned to work with difficult people and how to take leadership when people aren’t doing their job,”    

Making up for the team and working with the team is very important.”

Some students chose the job they are currently in for many reasons. For Madden, her love of books got her interested in working at the Sterling Public Library.

“In fourth grade, we had to set our own reading goals and I set mine pretty low. Mrs. Farney told me to set it a little bit higher and then once she did that, I had to read more books and then I eventually found out that books were actually really great. I love reading because it allows me to escape reality for a little bit. I never stopped after that,” said Madden.

For senior Mia Steinmetz, she chose her job at Dairyland because of her love of making and eating ice cream.

“ I like making ice cream and also I can have as much ice cream as I want and so it’s pretty great working at an ice cream place,” Stinemetz said.

Sophomore Mallory Beltz has a different job than most high school students, working for her neighbor attending to baby goats and lambs.

“I love my job. It’s so much fun getting to play with baby lambs and goats all the time and I love baby animals. I’ve learned how to keep animals healthy and how different environments affect how their immune system works,” Beltz said.

Although having a job can be stressful and very difficult at times, it can help you in the long run for your future career and how to be a leader.

Without these skills, it’s hard to be a team.

“We have so many shifts during the day that it’s hard to figure out shifts if you don’t feel good or you’re having a bad day, so teamwork comes into play when everyone is really willing to come in and cover shifts for everyone,” sophomore Shelby Drier said.          

“They are really helpful when I don’t know what I’m doing since I’ve only been there since August and they’re very willing to teach me.”