Finding a Job!

Frequently Asked Questions, Employment Resources for Youth in Northwest Minnesota, Independent Living Skills/Adulting Resources



Congratulations! Getting a job is a great first step. Here are a few things to think about right away:

  • Do you have ID, social security number and birth certificate so you can be hired? These items are also needed to set up a bank account to deposit you check.
  • An ID can also be used to cash checks, but keep in mind you might get charged a fee.
  • Are you able to pass a background check if they require it?
  • Do you have work attire? Sold color pants, shirt and shoes? Clothes that are not dirty or have holes?
  • Transportation to work?
  • References?
  • Obligations, such as children and school that you need to schedule work around?

Don’t forget, it costs an employer about $100 just to do the hiring paperwork for someone before the new hire has done any work.  An employer’s job is to only hire people who will make the business more money than they cost it.  A new hire is an investment and it is important that you make them feel like you are a safe investment.

Searching for a Job:

What to keep in mind while searching:

  • Do you have a job in mind?
  • Maybe a place where a friend works?
  • Do you know where to look for a job?

I would usually recommend starting with a google search of the town you want to work in + Jobs.

  • For example: Jobs near Bemidji, MN or Bemidji Jobs, then you would look through Indeed, Jobs HQ, Monster, etc.
  • You can also use google- Job Listings for your search.
  • Keep in mind that you do not need to add any personal information to access these site; DO NOT add your Social Security Number, bank information or debit card information if applicable.
  • There are also job postings on Facebook, you can create an account at and browse openings.
  • If you know where you want to work, go to their website, and find the CAREERS or JOIN OUR TEAM tab, it lead you to available jobs at that chain in your area.  Look at either the top or the bottom corners of the page, you can also use a search function on the website too.
  • You can also search the good old fashioned way by putting on nice clothes and go door to door to businesses you want to work at. Ask them if they’re hiring and if you can have an application.
  • Job fairs are also great areas to look for a job, you can apply and meet possible employers all at one place!


It’s okay to not really have references if it’s an entry level job and it’s your first job. First jobs are great as long as you’re an appropriate age to be getting a first job. Do you have at least 3 references? Good people to think of are the same ones you thought of for Support Network as well as:

  • Past coaches?
  • Foster Parents?
  • Relatives you’ve done work for who have a different last name than you?
  • People you’ve baby sat for or cleaned house for?
  • Past employers?
  • Friends that have known you for awhile?
  • School counselors?

Keep in mind that you will need as current contact information that you can get for each of your references? Do they answer their phone and check their messages? It is also important that you asked their permission to and let them know you’re using them as a reference.

Do you know how to fill out an application?

The best way to find out is to ask for a couple forms/ applications from one place and practice.  You can always save or make a copy so that you have the information handy for the next application.

  • Do you have a PDF of your Resume’ and know how to upload it on a job search website/ online application?
  • Are you able to print if off? If so, print one off and bring it with you to a job interview.

If you’re on the older side of this being your first job, or you have past jobs you don’t want to mention, have a plan for what you’re going to say when an employer asks you about your past work experience.

CONNECT with MyPath team and we can inform you who’s near you, and can help, or we’ll make an appointment with you to walk you through it.


Do you know how you’re going to get to your job if you’re hired?

Transportation in Northern Minnesota can be a challenge.

Do you have other obligations that will affect your availability to work? Make sure to be upfront about scheduling conflicts and to choose jobs that will work around your lifestyle. At least make an educated decision about what is more important to you: being able to work whenever they ask you to and getting the job, or possibly not getting that job, but being able to keep scheduling the other stuff you do? Are you busy in school or sports? Caring for younger siblings? Helping out at a family business?

Best of Luck! Connect with MyPath team if you have any more questions or need help.

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