Are you looking for a permanent job that you can build into a career?
Maybe you would like to follow a certain career path but want to try it out first.
You could be looking for some summer work, or maybe just looking for something part-time to help pay for your studies. Whatever the reason, there are some great Jobs For 17-year-olds out there waiting for you.
- Think Creatively
- Working with Computers
- The Non-Computer-Based Occupations
- Article Writer
- A Creative Writer
- Graphic Designer
- An Author
- An Interior Designers Assistant
- A Music Reviewer
- Perseverance is key…
- A Photographer
- Be different from the others…
- Selling on eBay and Amazon
- Designing T-Shirts
- A Translator
- Assistant to a Hairdresser
- A Baker
- Construction Worker
- A Gardener
- A Landscaper
- Assistant at a Tennis or Golf Club
- A Makeup Artist
- Initially, the money isn’t great…
- A Music Teacher
- A grasp of music theory…
- A Sports Trainer
- A passion for sport is essential…
- Part-Time and Evenings
- Entry Level Companies Who Hire Part-Time Staff
- During The Holidays
- Is That Enough To Get You Thinking?
- Starting Your Own Pet Sitting Business!
- Final Thoughts
At 17 years old most people don’t know what they want to spend the rest of their lives doing. You haven’t got to worry about it. Most of us have been there. We didn’t know either.
But 17 years of age can be a great time to try a few things out. Some will like creative jobs; others may prefer more technical occupations. There also be those that just prefer to work outside or even those who want to be their own boss.
So, let’s take an in-depth look at some of the options that are available. To organize the way I will look at them, I have categorized them into the following sections:
- Working With Computers.
- Non-Computer-Based Occupations.
- Part-Time and Evenings.
- Holiday Jobs.
So, let’s get started…
Working with Computers
Some people say this is a young person’s world. They might be right. Certainly, computing has changed beyond all recognition since I had my brief foray with it.
Today young people understand how it works and, more importantly, what it can do. Let’s look at a few occupations in the world of the computer. Some of these positions will take some expertise, of course. But I have included them anyway. It may be that you already have some knowledge or can acquire it.
If an individual or a small company needs to build a 3D image of something, they will need to hire a 3D modeler. Some of the larger companies involved in this form of design will probably have their own internal section to handle it. But many won’t.
The job usually involves taking a 2-dimensional plan and creating a 3-dimensional model. This is clearly a skill that you must acquire. But once you have that knowledge, there is a good paycheck to be earned.
The Audio Editor
Some hardware today have various forms of audio editing software or have access to it through a download. If you have been using and editing work on a computer, you likely have a rudimentary knowledge of how it works.
In some cases, a piece of basic knowledge is all it requires. It could involve editing an audiobook or just doing a ‘clean-up’ on some recordings. Maybe even creating some form of a soundtrack for a video. Once again, it is a sought-after skill level that is becoming more widely used.
An Online Blogger
If you like to write about things you see and know. And if you have creative persuasion, then becoming a blogger could be for you. You can write about whatever you like providing you have the experience and the knowledge.
One thing your Blog must have is appeal. You need to find a theme that will be of interest to a lot of people. Use good pictures, comment, and be informative. If it is a subject people like, then you can grow your audience. Once you have done that, sponsorship of your site and advertising are one step away.
But do try to choose a theme that isn’t already covered by thousands of other bloggers.
The Fashion Blogger
As an extension of being a blogger comes becoming a ‘specialized’ blogger. Fashion is a good example of specializing. It is a subject a lot of people are interested in. You may be able to get your posts sponsored by a fashion company when you promote their products.
Companies will pay good money for this sort of ‘personal advertising,’ but the content must be interesting and creative. They will expect you to represent them positively and to communicate with those who follow you about their products. If you like fashion and like writing, this could be an opportunity for you to combine both.
A Data Entry Clerk
Some companies prefer to send their data entry work out to individuals to input information from their homes. It saves the business space and all the costs associated with a full-time employee.
The work is usually very simple, as you can imagine. And it is really only just copying the information given to you into a set program. Depending on the nature of the business, there may be some occasions where you may have other responsibilities.
Not a big earner…
Moving data around or making accumulative reports could be needed occasionally. But those actions are also quite basic and easy to learn if you are unfamiliar with them. Not usually a big earner, but steady work you can do at home.
An Internet Researcher
There are occasions when employers need certain kinds of information that could be relevant to a variety of activities. It is time-consuming and therefore expensive for a company employee to have to do it regularly.
Companies will often employ an internet researcher who knows their way around and how to find information. These could be email addresses, phone numbers, prices, etc. Once again, a job that can usually be performed at home makes it convenient for both parties.
Developing mobile Apps
An asset to a variety of businesses these days is their app. Knowing how to build one is a skill that can be sought after. You might be asked not only to design it but also to carry out regular maintenance and fix any problems.
This is a skill that can be learned at home for those with computer skills and are willing to give it some time. It is a growing industry and one that pays quite well.
This is different from the ‘Blogger’ we have already looked at. The Podcaster will create a show based on a subject. They may have interviews with relevant or interested parties. There may be film footage shot in various places with a voice-over.
You will need a decent mic to go with your computer. And you will need to learn how to edit music and narration. Set up your show with an interesting theme and good contact, and watch your audience grow. And as it expands and gets more popular comes the opportunity for advertisers to use your content to market their products.
Social Media Marketing
Love it or hate it, social media is here to stay. At least for the time being. It can be a great place for some companies to market their products. As a 17-year-old, it is likely you already know your way around the social media minefield. Companies can benefit from your knowledge.
It will be your job to generate followers for their accounts, create posts that will attract followers, and communicate with followers and customers. You may be paid on commission of sales or followers, in which case, potential earnings can be good for those that are successful.
A Video Editor
If you think you can make a great video, then why not offer your services. There must be plenty of people on Youtube who either don’t know how or haven’t got the time to make a video.
It could be a range of people. Music videos for artists and bands, adverts and promos for small businesses, even for bloggers. There will be a lot of people who could use a good promotional video. Make up some very good samples to show them what you can do. Then you can start to build a customer base.
Testing and Reporting On Video Games
There won’t be many of these jobs around for obvious reasons, but if you could get your foot in the door, it would be worthwhile. It will involve more than just playing the game. You would have to test in a variety of scenarios at every level of the play to ensure it all works. So what sounds like fun will actually be quite involved and time-consuming.
A Voiceover Artist
This may sound like a long shot, but there is work out there. And it is not always work for a traditional sounding voice. The days when the newsreaders all sounded the same have gone. Some companies need regional accents and even different languages. Some need a certain style of voice and ways of speaking. Of course, clarity is important; you do need to be understood easily.
But if you are willing to practice and work at it, you never know. You will need a quality mic, and I mean quality, not some $30 special. You can practice and prepare some examples across a range of genres and then send them in to be considered.
Having a YouTube Channel
We have touched on this in considering other options. But having your own Youtube channel can be a money-making enterprise. You do need a good subject, good recordings, good voiceovers or music, etc. But there are a lot of people who have made a great success of it. And as you get better, you will attract advertising income relevant to what you’re doing.
Ok, that is a selection of computer-based opportunities. But believe it or not, there are other things than a computer. So, let’s take a look at some ‘non-computer based occupations.
The Non-Computer-Based Occupations
If you have a good understanding of a particular subject, then writing articles could be an opportunity. This could be anything from food, to musical instruments, to cars and accessories, to TVs and home entertainment.
You may be able to get yourself established with one of the agencies that supply articles to various websites. Your work will have to be accurate, entertaining, and interesting and will have to be within a certain number of words. You will be able to work at home and, to a certain extent, work when you want.
However, you may be asked occasionally to get the work in by a certain date, and that must be adhered to.
A Creative Writer
If writing is one of your assets, this is another way you could use it. Being a creative writer could include a range of topics, from Lyrics to songs, to poetry and short stories. You may even be able to find work writing for other people.
It will take a little bit of imagination, of course. But if you can make up stories and like to write, this could be something worth considering.
Let’s continue on a creative theme and consider life as an illustrator. You will, of course, need great skills, and be able to draw and create scenes and pictures. This could be for children’s books, artwork for bands or movies, or anywhere where there is a hand-drawn graphic.
It is usually going to be a self-employed, work-from-home position. And it will take some effort to get your foot in the door somewhere. But if you like drawing and being creative with it, there could be a future there.
Continuing on the same theme, I have included this is a position that you might want to work towards. If you are creative, can illustrate, and have an eye for color, then this will be something to consider.
Companies and the agencies that work for them need people to be creative visually. This is a position, though, that will almost certainly need a college course and a qualification. Most of the work will be in advertising and display. There is a significant career-ready for people who are willing to work hard enough.
You might not think this is possible. But as the saying goes, ‘everyone has one good book in them.’ Now, of course, at 17 years old, you probably haven’t found the story yet.
But in the early stages, you shouldn’t be trying to write ‘The Lord Of The Rings.’ Start with short stories. And don’t be afraid to send them off to a publisher. Get opinions on how you can improve. And one day, you never know. Even J.K. Rowling had to start somewhere.
An Interior Designers Assistant
An Interior Designers’ role is varied. And if you are creative and appreciate form and color, this might be a career in the making.
However, you will need to start at the bottom. And that might be by becoming an assistant for a while. And while you are working with the designer, you might need to obtain some qualifications along the way.
You could find a good designer who will give you tasks to do. Simple at first, and as you improve, the tasks might become more interesting. Don’t expect a big salary, though. This is an apprenticeship.
A Music Reviewer
At 17 years, it is unlikely you may have had much experience yourself as a musician, if any at all. But not all reviewers are ex-musicians of note. In fact, most of them aren’t. But they do love to listen to music.
So if that is also something you enjoy, this is certainly something to consider. Once again, as with most positions like this, it’s getting a start that is the hardest thing. Don’t reduce your chances by casting your net too thin. Embrace all sorts of music and write some reviews.
Perseverance is key…
There are plenty of online magazines you can send your work to. Perseverance is the name of the game with this. Just keep plugging away, and maybe someone will see something in what you do. A word of advice, though. Don’t disparage or be over-critical. That is unlikely to cut a favorable impression.
This was once an area reserved only for professionals with expensive equipment. Increases in computer processing power and the development of software now mean anyone can get involved. You will, of course, still need a good camera, though.
You can send your work to established agencies that may buy them. Or you can set up your own website displaying the pictures taken and sell them there.
Be different from the others…
The content must be interesting and different from what most others are doing to encourage companies or individuals to buy them. And of course, the quality of the photo must be very good. Learning how to use photo software will also be a necessity.
Selling on eBay and Amazon
Many young people have established themselves by selling on eBay and Amazon. The big advantages are that you can work at home, and a lot of the time, there is very little effort or operational costs.
It is very much like opening your own virtual shop. It will need to look good with great photos of what you are selling and concise descriptions. You will also have to consider delivery etc. If you have access to cheap or even free goods, then this could be an avenue to go down.
It seems that everything that happens these days has a T-shirt. The opportunities are endless, and in every environment, you will find them designed and used. Designs can be created on a computer, and there is specialist software available. You will need a good quality shirt and a good printer. And be able to come up with some interesting designs or funny comments.
The more you create, the better the chance someone will notice. Word will soon spread if you do a good job. Display them on your own website with prices and delivery arrangements.
If you are studying languages or are lucky enough to speak a second language, then being a translator is a great option. This can either be undertaken full or part-time, and there will be a reasonable amount of work depending on the language you speak.
You will need to understand the grammatical rules as well as the spoken and written word.
Assistant to a Hairdresser
If you are interested in becoming a hairdresser, it’s an occupation that will never be short of business. Finding a position as an assistant will open a few doors for you. It may lead to hairdressing, but it could lead to a career as a beautician if you prefer.
Being an assistant won’t just be observation. You may be required to sweep the floors, make appointments and ensure all the equipment is clean and ready for use. It won’t be well-paid to start with; no apprenticeships are. But it will allow you to learn and as you become skilled, there will be further opportunities.
If you love to bake, then it is unlikely you could find a better job. Even in today’s high-tech world, there is still a need for bakers and their skills. And it isn’t only bread we are talking about, though that is a major part.
There are cakes and pastries and flans and cookies and all kinds of delicious offerings. And, of course, you have the opportunity to create your own and the chance to specialize if you wish. There will always be a market for cakes for weddings, birthdays, and other special occasions. If you like baking, then this could be it.
Some people prefer to be able to work outside all day, despite the occasional bad weather. On a construction site, a young person is going to learn skills for the future and be paid for doing it.
You will be involved in some heavy work, of course, so your physical fitness will be important. The pay is usually quite good, but you will have to work for it. For those that like to get their hands dirty, construction work is always a good option. And construction workers will always be needed.
Let’s continue with the ‘rolling up your sleeves and working outside’ theme. This is another job for those who like to work in the fresh air. And also a special opportunity if you like plants and growing vegetables. Some people love their gardens. But some of them maybe aren’t fit enough to keep them up.
Take a look around your neighborhood. Do you see anyone like that? There probably are. Becoming a Gardener helps them but also helps you as you build a local business. And it won’t all be just cutting grass. There will be flower beds to attend to and maybe even vegetables.
Staying with the gardening theme, a Landscaper might be something to consider. There is an element of crossover in the job functions with a gardener, but there are some differences. Cutting grass, pruning, and spreading fertilizers will be the same. But Landscaping also has a design function.
People hire the landscaper to come up with plans for their gardens. They are then expected to create them and manage them. It is a job that would take some experience and know-how. It is, therefore, likely you would work with an experienced Landscaper initially. You later have the option of staying with a Landscaping company or setting up on your own.
Assistant at a Tennis or Golf Club
If you are interested in either sport, there may be opportunities in either activity at the larger clubs. They do hire juniors to carry out a range of activities, some of which may include making sure the playing areas are clean and presentable. You may also get to work in the club shop or even help out with bookings etc.
What you would be looking for is to help out with one of the coaches for either sport to start to learn the trade. Qualifications would have to follow, of course. But it is here you could make a start.
For more great info, it’s well worth checking out our in-depth look at How to Become a Teen Golf Caddy.
A Makeup Artist
There are a few stepping stones you may need to make to reach your desired occupation here. Strange as it may sound, face painting is often a good start. If you are creative and a good artist, face painters are a popular attraction at various events.
As you improve, you can start to think about attaching yourself to either a resident or a traveling theater group. Makeup artists are key to making the actor become someone else. It is a vital part of the illusion for the audience.
Initially, the money isn’t great…
To start with, this could be a part-time occupation, and the financial rewards initially are not great. But as with most things, it will take some to develop. If you are serious about becoming a Makeup Artist, stick it out.
A Music Teacher
If you are competent on an instrument, then this is an avenue to consider. This could start as a part-time occupation. However, if you are good, you could build your clientele for it to become a full-time job.
You would need to plan your lessons, keep records of students’ progress. You might have to issue reports to parents for younger students and assign home practice. You would also need to have a great personality and make learning fun.
A grasp of music theory…
But, you do need to be a competent musician. And in most cases, have a basic grasp of music theory. And in some cases, teach theory from the first lesson. That will depend on your instrument. But theory will be a part of any musician’s life to some degree, so you do have to know it yourself.
If knowing the theory of music isn’t your thing, then this might not be for you.
A Sports Trainer
We have already looked at Tennis and Golf, but of course, there are other sports. There will be qualifications to get later down the line. Those are the rules these days, which should be respected. However, there is nothing like some hands-on experience.
If you are serious about working in sport then getting some experience working beside an experienced coach will be a good idea. You may have to volunteer your services at first and then look to move on to a paid junior role somewhere.
A passion for sport is essential…
People notice a love for the sport and a desire to succeed. And they will also take notice if you are a fast learner. Sport can feel a bit like a ‘closed shop’ at times. To a certain extent, it is, but some doors can be opened if you work at it.
Part-Time and Evenings
Not everyone is looking for a career just yet. For those that need to earn some extra money, there are some good options to do that. So, let’s look at a few…
Assisting with Surveys
There are literally hundreds of companies that are conducting surveys. And the subject matter is wide-ranging. Unfortunately, you will not usually be able to choose the subject yourself.
Companies need to know people’s opinions which is why they undertake these surveys. Survey companies are hired to provide information, and the survey companies hire individuals to do it for them. A pleasant personality is about all that is required, and the money can be quite good.
To find out more, check out How to become a Teenage Survey Taker.
There is sometimes work available for people with a good ear to transcribe material. This is usually in the form of an audio recording but can also be a video. The job is to type accurately everything that is said.
You will sometimes have to include a special notation to identify who is speaking. Or possibly where there are silent periods or instances of other sounds in the text. Accuracy is obviously important for this role.
This may be something that you may not have considered. In your school education, if you have excelled at a subject, it may be possible to pass on that information.
It will depend on the particular subject in question and, of course, your own standard. But there will be some younger than you who would benefit from some home tutoring. And if you do a good job, word soon gets around.
Interested? Then take a look at How to Become a Teenage Tutor.
Their future in your hands…
As with the other occupations that include teaching I have already mentioned, there are some tasks you must attend to. Students will need records kept and lesson plans, homework will need to be marked and assessed for improvements. Reports given to parents and encouragement given to students. As a Tutor, you will be in a position to affect a young person’s future.
For some, this is an ideal way to do a bit of part-time work. It will need you to have some sort of First Aid qualification. The family must also think you are an honest and trustworthy, and caring individual. They are leaving their child or children with you after all.
It will depend on their ages, but you may have to feed them and put them to bed. Maybe even play with them first. But above all, you will be responsible for them, which is something to seriously consider.
This is a little more than just washing the car or vehicle. This involves cleaning outside and inside. Customers will expect as pristine a job as it is possible to do. You may also need some equipment depending on whether you work for yourself or a car detailing company.
This again is a job where repeat business through providing good service will offer financial rewards.
Walking The Dog
You will be paid for walking other people’s dogs. If you love dogs, this is a good opportunity to do what you like and keep fit at the same time. There are some care issues involved, including that they stay safe and do not overheat on hot days.
You may also be walking more than one dog at a time. So a basic understanding of how dogs interact and behave would be useful.
Sound like fun; learn more by taking a look at our in-depth guide on How to Become a Teenage Dog Walker.
A Lawn Mower
If you have the use of a Lawn Mower, then using it at weekends and evenings can supplement your income. Some people love a garden but don’t like cutting their grass. This could give you an extra bit of income, even if it is just working for family and neighbors.
Cut the grass, trim the edges, and if you want to make it look good, remove any weeds from flower beds. Do a good job, and you could have a queue waiting for your services.
Simple enough, most of us have done it. It is a steady income just for delivering newspapers. In most places, the papers will be prepared for you. These will either be every door free paper or those that have a specified address which is usually marked on them.
This can be quite hard work; it isn’t just a case of wiping windows down with a cloth and some water. You will need to make sure that all the dirt and grime are removed and that there are no streaks. You can either work for an established local company or set up on your own. Start with neighbors, family, and friends, and if you do a good job, and word will spread.
If you love sports, there is some money to be made as a sports referee. You will probably have to give your time for free initially while you get yourself established. But after that, if you are affiliated with the local organization, you may get hired to referee matches.
It will depend, of course, on the sport and its popularity. But there are some things you will need to do. You will have to get yourself a professional qualification in the sport and know the rules backward. And there is one other thing.
Dealing with the know-it-alls…
Those wonderful parents who know it all much better than you. Those who cast their eternal opinions on something they know nothing about. There aren’t many, but when you get one, oh dear. Learning how to deal with them is a good learning curve for you.
Working up to a life in professional sport is a great idea. But it won’t be easy. So, you may also want to check out How to Become a Teenage Youth Sports Referee for even more great info.
Entry Level Companies Who Hire Part-Time Staff
There are many companies, well-known to all, who use a lot of part-time staff. Here is a brief list and the occupations where they use part-timers.
Accept part-time staff at 17 to be either a Crew Member or a Closer.
Will use part-time staff as either a chef or a server.
At 17 years old, they will teach you how they make and serve their coffee.
They use 17-year-olds as Cashiers, Cart Attendants, and Stockers.
Also, I have already mentioned:-
- Makeup Artist.
- Music Teacher.
These positions can be part-time if you so choose.
During The Holidays
If you are still studying and just require a bit of extra income during the summer break, here are some suggestions.
Summer Camps have changed a bit since the days when Allan Sherman released Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh (A Letter from Camp). A camp counselor these days takes responsibility for a group of young people in a cabin. You need to ensure they stay safe and get to the various activities on time.
You will need to have a sense of responsibility, a good personality, and like being around kids.
If you like to swim and can put in the time to get qualified, a Lifeguard job could be right for you. After getting certified, you can contact local pools, beach centers, summer camps, etc. If there are activities around water, then there will need to be a lifeguard.
Ensuring people stick to the rules of the environment they are in is one element of the job. Taking care their safety and dealing with any incidents is another.
A Swimming Instructor
Staying in the water, if you don’t fancy being a lifeguard, how about a swimming instructor. You will again need a basic qualification. However, you will also need to be familiar with the basic techniques of swimming.
As with all sports, the technique is important, and you will have to teach it. And that applies to all the swimming strokes, not just one or two. You can work at the local pool or activity center, or you can set up as a freelance instructor.
If you like animals, then being a pet sitter can be a nice way of earning some money. People hire pet sitters to look after their pets while they are away or on holiday. This rather than putting them in kennels or similar facilities. Indeed, animals would probably prefer to be in an environment they know if their family has gone for a while. In some cases, you may live at the house but most of the time not.
You will need to make sure they are fed and have water, get exercise and go out to the toilet. And, of course, clear up any little accidents. Spending time with them so they get to know you wouldn’t be a bad thing.
Have you ever been to an event or a concert and wished you had a drink? There is good money to be made from attending these events and providing it. Either set up a stall, with permission, of course or wander the crowds. It is surprising how many buyers you will have, especially on a hot day.
You will need transport to and from the venue, of course. And you must be able to get bottled water at a good price to make it worthwhile.
Read more: The Pros and Cons of Commission-Only Jobs
Is That Enough To Get You Thinking?
There may be quite a few that I have missed, but those are the ones that come to mind. At 17 years old, as I said, all experiences can be a good thing. And you may find one that points you in a certain direction for a full-time career.
Choosing any job, full or part-time, can be a daunting experience. These might help:
Starting Your Own Pet Sitting Business!
Maybe you were pet sitting as a summer job and found that you loved it? Well, that’s great news!
Let’s take a look at my Pet Sitter Job Description in-depth to see what the position entails.
Starting your own pet sitting business is a great way to make money and do what you love. So, take a look at The Balanced Pet Sitter: What You Wish You Knew Before Starting Your Pet Care Business, and The Hiring Handbook for Pet Sitters & Dog Walkers: How to Find, Hire, and Keep the Very Best Staff for Your Pet Sitting & Dog Walking Business, or how about the Pet Sitting Business Book: How to Start and Finance a Pet Sitter & Pet Daycare Home-Based Business which we found quite insightful. As well as Think Like Your Dog and Enjoy the Rewards all available in 2023.
You need to be organized at all times when running your own business, especially one where appointments need to be kept and recorded. What better than with a quality Dog Grooming Appointment Book 2023, or the Pet Sitting Logbook and Scheduler, and a Pet Sitter Log Book: Simple Pet Sitting Business, a Pet Sitter Information Sheets: Petsitter Care Instructions and Emergency Contact Information Notepad, Pet Sitting Checklist w/ Notes to Owners, or perhaps a Pet Sitter Client Data & Appointment Log Book, and of course a Pet, Dog, Cat Grooming Customer Client Clip Cards to stay on top of everything.
Going to your first interview?
Well, that can be extremely daunting to anyone! So, we recommend these helpful guides such as Hiring Squirrels: 12 Essential Interview Questions to Uncover Great Retail Sales Talent, Get That Job!: The Quick and Complete Guide to a Winning Interview, How to Answer Interview Questions: 101 Tough Interview Questions, or perhaps Amazing Interview Answers: 44 Tough Job Interview Questions with 88 Winning Answers and why not the INTERVIEW with DESIRE and GET HIRED!: How to Ace the Interview, Sell Yourself & Get Your Dream Job also available online today.
If you’re familiar with the STAR Interview Method, you’ll want to check out The STAR Method Explained: Proven Technique to Succeed at Interview, as well as The STAR Interview: How to Tell a Great Story, Nail the Interview and Land Your Dream Job. You can also practice beforehand with the interactive notebook called the STAR METHOD INTERVIEW: A guide for interview prep for interview questions and answers during interviews.
It is never too early to start thinking about your future career. At 17 years old, you usually know which college or university you’re applying to already! So, getting your foot in the door with part-time work or an apprenticeship could help you along once you’re done with your studies.
But, even if it’s just a job for extra cash or life experience, there are plenty of opportunities out there. Don’t be afraid to have a go at something, even if it’s new to you. You never know where it might lead.
All the very best in finding your first job!