GREEN BAY - Sixteen-year-old Abbi Briggs says she's excited to have a summer job working at Bay Beach Amusement Park.
"This is my first job I've ever had," said an excited Briggs. "Yeah, I like it. It's fun getting out instead of just sitting at home all day."
However, she says that's just what some of her friends are doing.
"A lot of my friends have been looking, but [they haven't been] too lucky, so far," she said.
Teens, like Abbi, might be just some of the lucky ones.
Workforce officials say that teens will be looking for jobs the entire summer and sometimes, might not even find one.
"Some of the things they used to do have been automated," explained Jim Golembeski.
Golembeski is the executive director of the Bay Area Workforce Development Board.
He says there's no hard numbers on the exact number of unemployed teens.
However, he says as normal, teenager jobs (like working at a movie store) become automated, college students return home or older people take traditional teen jobs, teenagers are often the ones crowded out and don't have many places to turn to.
"Teen unemployment is definitely a lot higher today than it was, say, 10 or 12 years ago," said Golembeski.
"I think the older generation may be coming in, is adding to that mentorship type experience," said James Andersen, recreation superintendent for the Green Bay Parks Department.
Andersen says the majority of the department's 450 seasonal summer hires are teens or college-aged kids.
However, he says he's seen an increase in older people, like teachers, apply for summer jobs.
Andersen says while it could take a job away from a teen, he sees it as a positive.
"They can lead by example and they can bring their experience and maturity level and the younger generation can see that and just learn from that," Andersen said.
Golembeski says another sticking point for teens finding jobs are summer activities.
He says, often times, companies and teens cannot work around conflicts like sports or music camps.
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