A Good Education is not a Ticket to a Good Job

College graduates are experiencing "quarter life crisis"

Mid Life Crisis

Mid Life Crisis

We all want to think that our children will realize that getting a good education is their ticket to the future. Good jobs with earnings that will sustain them and their families comfortably. I was listening to a news report while driving this morning and the topic was how our collage graduates, with diplomas in hand and the hope in their hearts of the future, are finding it almost impossible to find a job.

Many of our graduates are now living back at home with Mom and Dad. Student loans are looming over their heads and nothing is coming in. Mom and Dad are having their problems also. Their retirements are gone, savings are down to nothing in most cases, many are under water in their homes and they are looking and can’t find jobs either. This sounds like a script for a reality T.V series doesn’t it? Well it’s not a script, it’s real and it is happening all across this country.

We’ve all heard of the mid life crisis. Many forty to sixty year olds fall into that trap. They have worked all their lives and now they are afraid they are missing out on life and decide to radically change what their doing and “go for it”. You see them driving around in new sport cars and decked out in new “threads” and visiting clubs. There is another side of this mid life crisis. It is based on the necessities of simply surviving day to day.

Depression sets in and worry is on the minds of these once productive individuals. They finally got the kids through higher education, and in a perfect world there is the thought in the back of their minds that perhaps, just maybe, they could count on the kids for a little help as soon as they get one of those high paying jobs, right? Well it’s not playing out like that today.

The kids are now home, frustrated and depressed and living with parents who are even more frustrated and depressed. Everyone is broke and angry. The new term for what the kids are going through is “quarter life crisis,” a new term on the street today. They have lived one quarter of their lives and should be on that shooting star upward, instead they seem to be right back where they started…broke. I can just imagine that conversations around the dinner table are stained.

These are some very strange times we are living in. We, you and I are going to be in the pages of future history books telling about these times. Just as our grandparents were written about depicting the great depression, so will we be. Our graduates may not get those high paying pie in the sky jobs, they may have to settle for part time labor jobs until our economy completely rebounds. In reality, they may be looking for those high end jobs for a very long time.

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  1. Joachim Stiller

    Remember the song by Lynn “something”. It was titled. “I beg your pardon, I never promised you a Rose Garden”. I was only 19 and in college when I first visited Hungary, at the time part of the Easter European Communist block. We had to check in our arrival at the local Ibusz (tourist office) where I met a distinguished gentleman on a type writer, checking us in. He was a college professor, Phd. in Social Economics, and his job everyday was a low paid, check in point for tourists. His wife was a chemist without a job and his daughter was a medical doctor, working as a nurse. You thought it could never happen here??? Watch out.

  2. meghannb

    All this bad stuff will go as it has before and without a good education you are really going no where!
    Things will change and those educations will be their tickets to a better life, without you can't even apply for most jobs.
    I am 55 yrs old and have seen this many times before, better times lay ahead let's try to be a bit more positive in some of the messages here, by the way the world is bigger than just the US! Your students might have to move around a bit but in the end what an experience and what an education about life.

  3. John Wheelwright

    Well Meghan, I'm turning 59 in another 2 months to the date and most of my friends call me the eternal optimist. I'm afraid I have not seen the economy turn as bad as it did this time and I'm truly not sure where to pull the optimism from. Of course I enjoy every sunrise and sunset, every glimpse of happiness that crosses my path and I even have found that a $5 bottle of Merlot may offer the same pleasure as the $25 bottle given the company and the conversation. Still I only believe in better times laying ahead when I see a change in mentality and understanding. I am totally in agreement however with your statement that American students should move around a bit more and widen their horizons. It would for example put an ease to my thinking that the current isolation policies coming from Washington will never stand a chance in the real world.

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