SAY WHAT? It’s true: $#@! happens.
But that’s no reason to get all stressed out! There are lots of programs and services that can help youth get ahead. So if you’re stuck, it’s a good idea to give a shout to your local Youth Employment Centre.
You can Ask an Employment Counsellor online, or look up your local Youth Employment Centre and give them a call to make an appointment.
While you’re here, have a look at some questions others asked–answers to your questions could be here already!?!
A friend of mine, got me this job interview next week to work at an office. (As a “junior assistant”.) But I don’t think any of my clothes are right for that sort of a place. And I definitely can’t afford to by a suit! I’m pretty sure it’s hardly worth it for me to show up at the interview if I’m going in jeans and a T-shirt. What should I do?
Cheer up, Jeremy! There are a couple of ways you can go about solving your dilemma.
- Get in touch with your local Youth Employment Centre and find out if they have a “Clothing Bank” program, or if they know of one at another agency. Clothing Banks are big rooms with donated clothes–including clothes of the fancy business-type variety. Usually these do not cost anything if you qualify, though you may need to dry-clean the clothes. (But that shouldn’t be too bad. Dry cleaning for pants and a shirt together should still be under $10.)
- You may in fact be able to afford to buy a suit! Check to see if there is a Goodwill (http://locator.goodwill.org/) or a Thrift (http://www.nro.salvationarmy.ca/english/Store%20Locator.asp) store near you. These stores specialise in the sale of donated clothes and other items. Pants with a belt and a shirt should not run you more than $15 – $20. And if you have black leather shoes or boots that aren’t too unusual, they will probably go well with dress clothes.
- If neither of the first two solutions work out for you. You may want to have a talk with your friend that got you the interview, or another close friend or family member. See if they would be willing to lend you either some clothes or some money until your first or second pay-cheque (when you would buy your own clothes or pay them back). Just make sure you follow through with the returning/paying back part!
Good luck, Jeremy! And if our Youth Employment Centre is in your area, do call and make an appointment; I would love to meet with you and try to help you out with all this!
I have a lot of trouble with interviews. I’m OK with the other stuff, like resumes and cover letters. But I always get so nervous at interviews that I mess up really badly. What should I do?
Dear F., This is exactly the sort of thing that a Youth Employment Centre is for. At most centres (including ours) Employment Counsellors can help youth one on one to improve their interview skills through suggestions and practise interviews. We also have a resource centre that has books and brochures on developing successful interview skills.
I suggest you call and make an appointment, and we’ll help you get more comfortable with the whole interview experience!
I’m 16 and have a criminal record. (It happened last year, I was out with a bad crowd and got caught and charged even though I did nothing) I’ve been looking for jobs, but it seems like I don’t have a chance when every application I fill out asks whether I have a record.
Dear Emily, Let’s take a BIG step back! Are you *sure* that you have a criminal record? You are pretty young, and unless you got charged with something VERY serious, it’s much more likely that you have a *Youth Record*. While this is similar, it is also quite different AND it is not considered to be a Criminal Record.
What this means is that if you’re asked “Do you have a criminal record?”, the truthful answer is “No”. And if they do not ask you about a youth record (and they usually will not) you are not obligated to tell them. You can find some more info here:http://www.cleo.on.ca/english/pub/onpub/subject/yj.htm
Why don’t you come in to our centre, and we’ll see how we can help you deal with the problems caused by having that youth/criminal record.
I’m trying to get a part-time summer job. But I don’t have a computer at home. Is it okay for a not so serious job to give a hand-written resume?
Dear C. J., hand-written resumes are never a good idea anymore. If you are close enough, you could come into our Youth Employment Centre. We have ten computers that our clients can use for writing and printing resumes and cover letters. We can also help make sure that you’re resume is as impressive as possible! And we have a program called Summer Jobs Service that can help you get – well, you probably guessed it – a summer job!
Hope I’ll see you here at the centre soon!
I want to get into carpentry, but I don’t have a clue where to start. Can you guys help me?
Dear Jean, Carpentry is a profession that people usually get into through apprenticeship.
The apprenticeship process is several years long, but you’re paid throughout most of it. (And government assistance is usually available during the parts when you are not.) If you want to start an apprenticeship in carpentry, you should give us a call and make an appointment. When you come in, I can explain to you the whole process in more detail.
And once you’re clear on everything (responsibilities, expectations, costs, et cetera), if you are sure it’s what you want, our centre can even help you get started with the apprenticeship process!
Hope to hear from you soon!