Why doesn’t she just get a job?

Summer JobsFinding a summer job stocking shelves, serving root beer floats — or even Filet-O-Fish — might not be as easy as it used to be, if you’re a high school kid looking for some pocket money.

I’ve read that youth employment is the lowest it’s been for decades — partly because of college application-padding experiences (for those who can afford a summer without a paycheck), but also because adults have been taking a lot of the unskilled, minimum wage jobs.

Have you found that to be true, here in the East Bay?

Below is a resource list for summer jobs. I’m not sure if all of these organizations are still hiring, but it’s probably information worth having in your back pocket if you’re a student or if you have a teenager in the house.

If anyone else is hiring, let us know!

Oakland Unified School District

Youth Employment Partnership
2300 International Blvd.
Oakland, CA 94601
(510) 533-3447
Employment and training programs for youth ages 14-24, including AmeriCorps, Oakland Youth Self-Sufficiency, YouthBuild, and Team Oakland. Offers a summer program of work experience and training seminars for high-risk youth; nine monthly workshops on leadership development and job readiness; and a variety of vocational skills development clusters.

Oakland Private Industry Council (PIC)
Oversees the following no-cost career centers throughout Oakland:
Oakland Career Center
1212 Broadway, Suite 100
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 768-4473

California Conservation Corps
Year-long residential and non-residential programs throughout the state. Openings available year-round.

Covenant House of California*
2781 Telegraph Avenue
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 625-7800
Employment Skills Program, including pre-employment counseling, job development, and job retention services.

East Bay Conservation Corps
1021 Third Street
Oakland, CA 94607
(510) 992-7800
Comprehensive academic and employment program for youth ages 17-24 offering education through service learning.

Job Corps
655 H Avenue, Bldg. 422
Treasure Island Station
San Francisco, CA 94130
(415) 277-2400
(888) 562-6031
Educational and vocational training program for youth ages 16-24 in fields including culinary arts, plumbing, carpentry, accounting.

Mayor’s Summer Jobs Program
(510) 768-4437
Call for registration locations for summer jobs for youth ages 16-21.

Oakland Career Center East
675 Hegenberger Road, 3rd Floor
Oakland, CA 94621
(510) 563-5200

The English Center at Mills College
Geranium Cottage
5000 MacArthur Blvd.
Oakland, CA 94613
(510) 430-2234

Lao Family Community Development, Inc.
1551 23rd Avenue
Oakland, CA 94606
(510) 533-8850
Offers job search and job placement assistance, referral and employment counseling, basic skills, job readiness, leadership development, financial literacy, internships, and a youth club with youth-driven activities.

Merritt College One-Stop Shop
12500 Campus Drive Q202
Oakland, CA 94619
(510) 436-2449

The Unity Council
1900 Fruitvale Avenue
Oakland, CA
(510) 535-6101

Scotlan Youth and Family Center
1651 Adeline Street, 2nd Floor
Oakland, CA 94607
(510) 832-4544
Offers basic education (GED, California High School Exam Prep), pre-employment skills, job placement and computer clerical training.

Pivotal Point*
2647 International Blvd., Suite 420
Oakland, CA 94601
(510) 536-6604
Offers intensive training, education, case management and other supportive services to high risk, underserved youth between 16-24 years of age.

Spanish Speaking Citizen’s Foundation
Andrea Aguilara
Nancy Lopez
1470 Fruitvale Avenue
Oakland, CA 94601
Telephone (510) 261-7839
Fax (510) 261-2968
Offers a three-stage program featuring: 1) classroom training in basic computer and leadership skills; 2) participation in one of three 36-hour classes: Advanced Computer Training, Journalism Training or Oakland History Project Museum Training; and 3) a 13-week (for younger youth) and an 18-week (for older youth) internship or subsidized employment during the school year.

East Bay WORKS



http://www.eastbayworks.org/categories.php?id=317 (additional sites)

East Bay WORKS runs no-cost career centers throughout the East Bay, including:

Alameda One Stop Career Center

*L. Silva (POC) 510-748-2109

College of Alameda

Library Room L-215

555 Atlantic Avenue

Alameda, CA 94501

(510) 748-2208

Hayward One Stop Career Center

Eden Area Multiservice Center

24100 Amador Street, 3rd Floor

Hayward, CA 94544

(510) 670-5700

Ohlone One Stop Career Center

Ohlone College

39399 Cherry

Newark, CA

Employment Development Department (EDD)

675 Hegenberger Road

Oakland, CA 94621

(510) 563-5200


Online and on-site employment services.

Helping Our Young People with Employment & Education (H.O.P.E.)

1212 Broadway

Oakland, CA 94612

(510) 768-4482

241000 Amador Street, 3rd Floor

Hayward, CA 94544

(510) 265-8384

675 Hegenberger Road, 3rd Floor

Oakland, CA 94621

(510) 563-5253


Connects foster youth ages 16-24 wih employment opportunities as well as educational and community resources.

images, in order, from the following photostreams on flickr.com/creativecommons: astrocruzan, gwENvision, neisenc, jcwes2004, and (the truck) MrErik

Katy Murphy

Education reporter for the Oakland Tribune. Contact me at kmurphy@bayareanewsgroup.com.

  • Nextset

    Has anybody else heard about applicants for entry level food service jobs being told “bilinqual preferred”?

  • John

    Yes, but for a very legitimate reason! The restaurant seeking food service workers posted a hand washing sign is in Spanish ONLY. Consequently non-Spanish speaking/reading workers wouldn’t know they needed to wash their hands, as required by law. Non compliance with the law would be totally unacceptable!

  • Jesse Dutton-Kenny

    Well I had no trouble finding a job because I already knew the owner, but my boyfriend is having a lot of trouble… so this whole list helps. Thanks Katy!

  • Nextset

    I’ve been working with a number of people in their early 20’s and up trying to get them placed into careers, voc education and grad school. I have a feeling there is something going on.

    People are bouncing off screens. I can usually coach most people around them, but I’m seeing screens being put up and enforced maybe stronger than before. I’m noticing a more cold and cavalier attitude against people who hit the screens. I’m also noticing a more stupid and clueless attitude in the uncoached – they don’t know that the screens exist or how they work. They seem to think that “I’m a good person” so everybody should just accept them regardless of baggage they carry.

    When they hit the screens they are unprepared emotionally for the setbacks. I hear stupid comments about maybe abandoning that industry – refusing to inquire and learn about how things work, minor temper tantrums, etc.

    This reminds me of when I worked in a bank briefly and would refuse to approve a new checking account or decline a loan or overdraft. Except now we are talking about barriers to a school, trade, a career or a complete industry. I feel that these barriers are going to get more common and more severe, and that the unprepared are getting more numerous.

    The well connected don’t have the problem but they are relatively few or at least I don’t see them trying to get into skilled trades and state licenses. Law school and med school admits favor the legacy applicants anyway. The first in their family applicants bounce a lot.

    It’s kind of tiring trying to keep the morale of some of these people up, but, hey somebody did it for me.

    Brave New World.

  • Sue

    Ewwww! Ick! John, I hope that was intended as a joke!

    Even 40 years ago when I was in elementary school and worked in the cafeteria, I knew enough to wash my hands, and I don’t remember any signs being posted there at all.

    And I would have expected the laws that require the signs to be posted in food service businesses would also have requirements about the language(s) to be used? But I’m not a lawyer, so maybe Nextset can correct me if I’m misinformed.

    I don’t remember ever seeing a Spanish-only sign – where did you see it? I think I might want to avoid eating there! And any teens looking for summer jobs might want to avoid applying there, too.

  • John

    It’s alright Sue! The staff was all Hispanic and could read Spanish. I cheched, ate a burger and never threw up once! The restaurant is located somewhere between Santa Cruz and Monterey. The next time I drive by I’ll note down the name.

  • Nextset

    Ever had to explain the basics to a fully grown child about what to wear to work? (meaning a boy or girl of maybe 24). Not to mention how to dress for a job interview…

    Even the interns… I remember telling an intern that if he/she set foot around here dressed to move furniture I would find them some boxes and furniture to move… I told them that in case they didn’t know, to look at what the lawyers wear and dress the same.

    The smart/connected interns just magically seems to know these things and fit in. They quickly got the best assignments. You-know-who didn’t and some even wanted to argue about the unwritten dress code. You wonder what these people are leaning in school nowadays..

    Their parents may not know about how to handle things in this environment because some of the parents aren’t professional workers. I do expect the schools to prepare people for these career paths but I suppose that’s too much to ask. But then the schools are the ones with the internship programs who referred these kids.

    The non-legacy kids come in frequently not knowing how to behave or fit in, and often don’t have the political skills to fit into the offices. This is another reason why the legacy kids do so much better – and upon grad school application time they have the connections, references and internships that the wanna-bes don’t.

    I’m not talking about burger flipping jobs here but I’ll bet there are variations on this theme even for entry level bank teller jobs. Do the educators believe the schools are or should be coaching teens for jobs?