Jarter Jargon

Graduation and the “Entitled” Generation

Posted on: February 26, 2012

Here’s a question: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

It’s a cliche we’re all used to, but really. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

As a senior at Marquette, it’s come to that time where conversations between friends and I are “Have you found a job yet? What are your plans after school?” It’s a fair question. I’ve spent four years at this university in hopes of graduating and living a comfortable life. However, I’ve had conversations with people (who won’t be named) that haven’t found a job yet but assume that when they do, they will be set for life.

A little background info: I’ve always been fascinated by the change of industries and people who work in them. It seems today that people work a job for a handful of years and then move onwards and upwards. My grandfather has worked the same job for 50 years. My father has held maybe 3-4 jobs his whole career. What has caused this change in our generation’s job-hopping? It’s a little thing I like to call the “Entitled Generation.”

Back to my friend who thinks they will be set for life upon graduation. Their argument is that they have studied for 4 years at a nice university crafting a great work ethic and fantastic education. It’s not that they KNOW they will land their dream job upon graduation, it’s that they ASSUME they will land their dream job.

Have we become a generation of entitlement? We aren’t going to graduate as CEOs, but I feel like there are a large amount of seniors out there who assume so. When they find that after interviews and job offers don’t measure up to what they expected, they become frustrated and just don’t get why employers aren’t realizing how awesome they are!

That last bit is to be read with a tinge of sarcasm.

Maybe some of us will graduate into a dream job. Most of us won’t, but that is part of life: proving our worth and showing our bosses that our ideas maybe do merit some handshakes and a sly nod.

Just a little food for thought for seniors prepping to graduate. In the meantime for those interested in their future (and being that this is an emerging media class), check out this great infographic on social media salaries.

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5 Responses to "Graduation and the “Entitled” Generation"

Great post Josh. Would love to hear more about your expectations after graduation.

Two points. I do think there is a level of entitlement that I don’t get. Perhaps Americans have always believed that hard work meant a reward. But college is just the beginning. It gives you a foundation that you then must continue to build upon once entering the work force.

And that becomes my second point. We must continue to learn and amass experience to become truly great in our chosen professions. You can not come out of college and just expect to be a director or manager. You must learn about your client, learn about the agency (and your teams), and about the business (or industry). In most cases, students are not prepared with any of that knowledge coming out of college.

And that is why you have to start somewhere. It’s great to have expectations, as long as they are realistic.

Nice post.

I’ve been noticing this lately as well, especially with those just entering college. We still have the idea that our parents have planted in our heads that we will graduate and get a job that pays well and we’re set. As someone who graduated from undergrad a year and a half ago, I’ve learned that this doesn’t take long to get smacked right out of you by the real world. I have friends who graduated a year ago and are just now finding a job. I have friends who are internship jumping. I even have a friend who had two majors and a 4.0 in undergrad who couldn’t even find an internship for the first 6 months after undergrad. Reality is, the job market is difficult right now! While it’s important to look at potential salaries, it’s also important to remember just how much money it takes to live as “comfortably” as you want to and how hard it is to even land one of these low paying jobs. Therefore, we must cut out this entitled idea and start doing the necessary grunt work if we want to succeed.

I thought this was a really interesting post. I’ve been told by my co-workers that the difference between my generation and their generation is that they “live to work” and we millennials “work to live.” Another point that I’ve heard a lot, and has been reiterated by my peers is that we aren’t necessarily looking for our dream job..but a job that we can start in and leave in a few years. I think our generation gets bored quickly and needs excitement, so we might job-hop way more than your parents or grandparents.

I think the growth of social media and just digital positions is a great market for our generation to grow. We are the first generation to really begin to understand social media and will be able to jump on the bandwagon at our internships or jobs. I think it is a skill that every one of our entitled group should have going into the field.

Ahh I really like the “living to work” vs “working to live.” Totally agree!

[…] a previous blog post, I talked about how my generation seems to be a bit too entitled. It’s all too true. Students […]

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