Busy Bees

A look into the lives and stresses of students who work and those who don’t.


Photo by Stephanie Alecio

A photo of Stephanie Alecio’s Interior Design homework.

In high school, kids are learning to play their part in society and fit into their roles. A lot of students are able to manage more stress than others, whether it be the amount of homework or maintaining a job on top of good grades. 

It is important to acknowledge the difference in students’ lives when they are exposed to stress in certain quantities. 

Senior Stephanie Alecio doesn’t have a job but still manages to stay busy. 

“After school I normally drive home, help cook dinner, and do my homework then get ready to sleep.”

Alecio highly values her education and always makes homework her priority. Even though she does not have the added responsibility of a job, she still finds herself caught under a whim of tension. 

“I am stressed most of the time, but it also depends on what I have to get done for school,” Alecio said.

Education is the gateway to success in many cultures. As a student, Alecio realizes the importance of attaining a skill set that will enable her to be ready for her future career. However, for most students, the responsibility of finishing homework on time with quality work put into assignments can be difficult to manage. 

“I highly value my education,” Alecio said. “Although sometimes I procrastinate, school can be very stressful at times.” 

Along with the tricky task of managing homework, comes the importance of maintaining a healthy social life. 

“Personally I think [homework] gets in the way of family time or just socializing with peers.” Homework demands time and energy that can sometimes get in the way of Alecio’s priorities. 

Overall, Alecio is a hardworking student who genuinely cares about her future. Even though she is unemployed, time management is something that swells her stress levels as she must balance her schoolwork along with her own social life. 

On the other hand, students with jobs have another level of responsibility they are obligated to attend to. Senior Mia Layne immerses herself in her social life while having the weight of school and work on her shoulders. 

Layne works at Scooters as a barista, along with babysitting every weekend, tutoring during the week, and she is also a part of the Senior Class Board. Layne’s hands are full, to say the least. 

“Overall I’m pretty stressed,” Layne said. “I’m trying to make money for college and think about my future. It’s a lot for a 17-year-old to handle.”

When it comes to school, Layne enjoys the environment overall, but homework is one thing she sometimes struggles to manage. 

“I don’t always get my homework done,” Layne said. “Between working a lot and trying to keep my mental health good, homework is my last priority.”

A normal day for Layne after school is to go home after school, if she does not work at Scooters, and try to do homework until she needs to tutor. She tutors until about 9:30 p.m. and then goes home to shower and sleep. When she works at Scooters, she will go right after school and then come home and go to bed. This leaves little time for school work. 

Without the proper time to finish homework and study, Layne is put under a lot of pressure to keep her grades up and balance her work and social life as well. 

“I am still happy even though I am stressed, but that’s only because I have the best friends ever.” Layne said.

Balancing school on top of social life or work is difficult for anyone. Whether or not a student is employed, stress is still something that students have to cope with. Stress is different for everyone and it all depends on priorities. 

Layne and Alecio are both stressed and are always finding ways to find footing while handling their responsibilities. In comparison, Layne has less free time than Alecio, but both still are content with their lives and well being. 

Overall, being a full time student is difficult in and of itself, let alone holding a part time job. Every person faces the pressures of life no matter their circumstances and it all depends on how that person copes with their stress. Managing time and setting priorities are essential to effectively balancing all aspects of adolescent life.