But that is changing this year, as older workers fill permanent jobs, leaving thousands of openings for young people.
From the city of Houston to the YMCA and even UPS, there are thousands of seasonal jobs about to open up for young people. If you want one, you have to act now.
Nineteen-year-old Moriah Mcintosh is not a young person looking for a job; she already has one at the YMCA.
"It is a cool transitional job and it will get you through college, and it works around your school schedule," Mcintosh said.
In May, 1,000 others between the ages of 16 and 24 will be filling summer jobs at area YMCAs, and the hiring process is already under way.
"We are hiring now; our jobs are all posted online," said Ann Herlocher with the YMCA of Greater Houston.
Herlocher says the organization is looking for lifeguards and camp counselors. She adds any young person applying for a job with the Y, or anywhere else, should clean up their social media accounts.
"Employers do look at that and teens need to be aware that they will look at it and they need to present a professional front for any potential job that they are looking for," Herlocher said.
The Y is not the only place looking to hire young people. UPS has 1,500 positions available in our area. For the first time in several years, the prospect of landing a summer job is improving for local teens.
"The market is opening up, the economy is doing a whole lot better than it has been in the past. You have UPS, the city of Houston -- as they always do, they have lifeguard positions that are available," said Brenda Woods, the Youth Service Supervisor at Texas Workforce Solutions.
Woods says local teens and young adults who are interested in a summer seasonal job should act now.
"Act immediately, because there is a whole lot of competition out there, not only with just the young adults, but the adults," Woods said.
Young people who do not have a lot of job experience can list volunteer positions they have had or even odd jobs they may have done for family or civic organizations, but the main thing is look at your Facebook page and make sure it is not going to scare off a potential employer.