6/23/2016 9:54:04 AM
As employers look for new ways to meet their workforce needs, the number of jobs held by teenagers in Southwest Minnesota continues to increase. Now filling just over 8,700 jobs in the region, data shows that workers between 14 and 18 years of age gained nearly 700 more jobs in the summer of 2015 compared to the prior year, an 8.4 percent jump. These teens now hold almost 5 percent of the total jobs in the region, up from 4.4 percent just five years earlier.
Two industries employ more than half of the 14- to 18-year-olds in the region: Accommodation and food services accounted for 28.7 percent and retail trade provided 27 percent of the jobs, combining for 4,863 jobs in the summer of 2015. That was a 10 percent increase compared to the previous summer, meaning those two industries accounted for 70 percent of job gains for 14- to 18-year-olds in the last year; and a 16 percent climb compared to the summer of 2010 (Figure 1).
The next two largest industries hiring 14- to 18-year-olds were health care and social assistance, which provided about 10 percent of jobs for teenagers; and public administration, which offered just under 9 percent of the jobs. While health care and social assistance hired nearly 80 additional 14- to 18-year-old workers over the past year, public administration employed about 20 fewer teenagers compared to 2014, but had 165 more teens than in the summer of 2010.
Because they employ three-fourths of workers in the youngest age group, teen job seekers may want to focus their job search in these four industries. Most restaurants, hotels, retail stores, nursing homes, and city governments have positions available and would welcome applications from teenagers looking for summertime employment or part-time work during the school year.