Tom Auffhammer, 17 (right) scoops ice cream in Syracuse, N.Y. Teens continue to face stiff competition for summer jobs, but a downward trend in summer hiring for teens actually predates the recession. Michelle Gabel/The Post-Standard/Landov hide caption

toggle caption Michelle Gabel/The Post-Standard/Landov

A sign outside a McDonald's restaurant in Chesterland, Ohio, advertises job openings earlier this month. Amy Sancetta/AP hide caption

toggle caption Amy Sancetta/AP

Kevin Hill, a San Diego landscape designer, was doing well financially before the downturn. Now, he says he feels "lost." John Ydstie/NPR hide caption

toggle caption John Ydstie/NPR

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor