The next ‘lost generation?’

As college students born in between the years 1982 and 2000, the majority of Seton Hall students, we are members of what has been dubbed by generation theorist William Strauss as the “Millennial Generation.” Another nickname of our generation has sprung about over recent years, the “Boomerang Generation,” due to the newfound tendency of young adults to return to their origin homes after living on their own for short periods of time.

The 2000 U.S. Census recorded that the number of people aged 25 to 34 still living with their parents had nearly doubled since 1960, rising from nine percent to 17 percent in the forty year gap. By 2008, the number reached 20 percent.

So how did all of this come about?

New York Times staff writer Robin Marantz Henig’s Aug. 2010 article entitled “What Is It About 20-Somethings?” digs deep into the sociological and psychological mysteries of our generation’s inability to grow up at a “normal” pace, a pace set by our parents and grandparents.

Our parents, most of who belong to the “Baby Boom Generation,” had obvious occupational frontiers that needed to be conquered and that is just what they did.

With all of the current and ever-changing technology, our professional frontiers are slightly harder to discern, which means we must work harder to recognize them.

The recent economic recession is also a main factor of the equation resulting in more and more young adults returning to their origins.

The Economic Policy Institute published a 2010 article entitled “The Kids Aren’t Alright,” stating that teenagers reached their highest unemployment rate since 1948 in Oct. 2009 at 27.6 percent.

Last year’s Pew survey recorded that 37 percent of 18-to-29-year-olds were unemployed or no longer looking for work.

Due to an overall lack of jobs in America, our youth labor market is losing a valuable time period of work, such as recent graduates, where critical worldly lessons are generally taught and learned.

Young adults are starting their careers much later than in U.S. history because finding jobs in most fields is nearly hopeless.

We must use our assets and advantages efficiently; we can head to the on-campus Career Center to start applying for internships and meet Pirate mentors for guidance.

We can make it, we just have to try. Let’s not go down in history as the ‘Failure to Launch’ generation.

Matthew Bryant is a junior journalism major from Utica, NY. He can be reached at matthew.bryant@student.shu.edu.

Author: Staff Writer

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