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For Teens, Harder Than Ever To Land That Summer Job

07/05/12 12:00PM By Mitch Wertlieb
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VPR/Samantha Fields
Meghan Deasy has been making creemees at Bragg Farm in East Montpelier for the past few summers. For many teens both in Vermont and nationwide, finding a summer jobs is difficult these days.

A summer job is a hallmark of adolescence - a way to pass the time, get some valuable work experience, and make a little spending money. For some teenagers, it's also a necessity - to help support the family, or save for college. But many teenagers are struggling to find jobs in this economy. Nationwide, more than 44 percent of teens who want summer jobs can't find them, or can't get as many hours as they'd like. In Vermont, the unemployment rate among 16-19 year olds is nearly four times the state average. We talk to Carrie Ballou, a Workforce Investment Act youth case manager for the Department of Labor based in Central Vermont, and Lindsey Lathrop, the Assistant Director of the non-profit organization Linking Learning to Life, about what a summer job - or lack thereof - can mean for a teenager. And we talk to a couple of local teens, Kate Sprout and Linnea Wilhjelm, about their experiences and what they're seeing among their friends.

Also on the program, the Quebec government recently announced that it will provide a $58 million loan to the owner of the asbestos mine in Asbestos, Quebec. Montreal Gazette Environmental Reporter Monique Beaudin provides an update on why the government has pushed for the loan, how the mine's reopening will impact the town and what the reaction has been in the province and in Canada.

And as flowers go, you could call peonies the show-off of the flower world, with their big, full blossoms, layers and layers of petals, and deep, vibrant colors. Their good looks, and their rich, perfume-y scent, have gained them many loyal fans. Including the Countryman family in Northfield. For them, one peony, given as a gift 20 years ago, started a love affair that turned the family farm into a destination for avid gardeners, botanists and peony fans from around the world. VPR's Samantha Fields recently visited the Countryman Peony Farm in Northfield, where the flowers - and the daunting challenge of keeping up with them - were on full display.




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