Teen takes construction job to help pay for school
Concerned that he would miss out on online learning, sixth form student at St Catherine-based Guy's Hill High, Nathan Douglas, sought a source of income.
The 17-year-old from Palmetto Grove, St Mary, started working on a construction site on Post Road in the parish on March 29.
"I took the job because I saw a way where I could assist myself while going to school and the online classes cost a lot. Especially when using Google Meets, the data reduce quickly," he said.
A video of Douglas surfaced online on the weekend, showing how he sustains himself by working on the construction site. He said he is impressed by the positive feedback his video is receiving, as persons commend him for his hard work.
He told THE STAR that he uses his weekly pay to purchase data plans on the weekends so that he can visit his Google Classroom to complete assignments, do additional research on topics and catch up on the lessons taught.
Affected by this pandemic
"I could also supply any simple wants for myself, so I didn't have to ask my parents because they too have been affected financially by this pandemic," Douglas said.
He shared that his father, Winston Douglas, a mason, and his mother, Orlene Williams, a helper, have both seen a decline in a demand for their skills due to the coronavirus. Nathan, who is preparing to sit four units in the upcoming Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examinations, said the decision to work on a construction site was not hard, having gained knowledge of the trade from as early as age 12, while accompanying his father.
"I live with my father, because my mother is a helper and she go out in the days so he couldn't leave me alone. Everywhere him go, him bring me and run taxi with me, so me know everything. I have experience in the field," he explained.
Nathan, who is also a cadet, already has six Caribbean Secondary Examination Certificate passes. But he admits that balancing classes with his job can be exhausting. But he is determined.
"I just want to make myself proud and my mother and my father. Just want to uplift myself to the best of my ability because I have dreams of becoming a soldier in the Air Wing," he said.