The lunch bell rings. Students sprint out of their classrooms to get in the lunch line. So does sophomore Katinka Lennemann. However, Lennemann stands behind the counter.
For the first 30 minutes of lunch, Lennemann and three other students serve their fellow students in the Carlmont lunch line. They serve the food in the main lunch line and occasionally help serve in the pizza line or work the cash register.
“It’s really fun, and you get free food,” said Sage Ishibashi-to, a senior and lunch line worker.
For the students working in the lunch line, it is not a big sacrifice to give up part of their break. They say they enjoy being productive and making money at a time where they would not be doing anything else with their lunch break anyways.
“It does not cut into any of my other activities. Normally, I don’t do anything at lunch, so instead of doing nothing, I’m making money,” Lennemann said.
As of now, the workers make minimum wage, which is $13.50 an hour. However, the minimum wage in Belmont is going up to $15 in 2020, so the students will benefit from the pay raise.
“I usually save most of my money, but the money that I do spend is usually on either food, groceries, or supplements,” said Ishibashi-to.
The students are learning many life lessons from their job. They are learning how to work with adults, responsibly manage money, and work hard in a job.
“It allows me to get experience in a work environment with a boss and other co-workers. Also, it teaches me how to handle money from a paycheck,” Lennemann said.
Lenneman was referred to the job by a friend. After realizing how much she enjoys the experience, she suggested to another friend, sophomore Cori Nicolson, that she should apply. The four students work together with adult co-workers to handle the lunchtime rush.
“The employees and students who work there were super sweet when I met them,” Lennemann said.
The students are lead by their boss Hector Moreno. Moreno teaches them how to do their jobs properly and assists them with the cash register occasionally.
“The four students I work with have been excellent,” Moreno said.
According to Moreno, they are not currently looking to hire, but he would be willing to add a new member if somebody was interested. For more information, talk to Moreno or pick up an application form in the Student Union.