Saw this story on GMA News and one thing struck me: Fresh graduates expecting to land high-paying jobs. There is nothing wrong with that. But if this is how our younger generation is being molded, I feel frustrated (to put it mildly).
I may sound old, but when my generation left College, we went through a lot of trouble landing a job –not necessarily a high-paying one. As the executive in that website that was quoted by this report said, it’s not about the money. It’s about the learning, the experience and the career you want to build. Another thing: jumping from one job to another to get a bump in salary is also a bad strategy for young graduates. I use to hire people for jobs in my previous work in Yahoo! When I see a person staying for only a few months or a year in a job, that’s a red flag.
Incidentally, I’m now reading a book called “Startup Nation,” which digs deep into a nation that has produced the most number of new businesses for a country in the world. That country is Israel. Amid constant threats from its Arab neighbors, this country has developed a hub of highly motivated, assertive, and innovative youth. Add to this is their military training that includes tough educational requirements. Their youth aim to enter the military elite. The result: By age 23, most Israelis have gained experience, exposure, mental toughness, and maturity to make it in the real world. Most of them graduate to becoming successful entrepreneurs.
Now, back to the report. I’ve had this conversation with some friends this week, which revolved around today’s youth. As an educator, I feel that I have this duty to mold them to become better students of life –not just in journalism. But changing the behavior is a daunting task if this generation is growing in an environment of too much information (excessive, sometimes), less introspection, and little patience.
Let’s take the Facebook example. Kids today are immersed in so much information on social networks. Once they like something, they make it known to everyone. What is troubling (and this may go down the philosophical lane) is that how many of these young kids do stop and think whenever they share quotes, or like pages or a status messages on Facebook. Very few (based on anecdotal evidence). Also, in the process of doing this, their opinions are formed around these fleeting information that often lacks context or history. In short, they like something because their friends did. That’s enough “context” to dictate the response of most of our youth.
I have observed this phenomenon as I watch my kids and other people’s kids. They re-post photos or memes that use language they usually don’t understand or even speak. It is frustrating but that’s how it works these days. Often times, I remind my kids to never like anything or re-post content that doesn’t represent them–or at least tells the world who they are.
Why am I concerned? Kids expecting high-paying jobs after graduation is a symptom of the values that they have these days. As communicators, teachers, and journalists–even entrepreneurs alike–the biggest lesson that we should be teaching our youth is patience and purpose. With that comes hard work and a clear understanding of who they want to be–and what purpose should they serve as they grow up. Of course, failures in life will come. If they’re values are not solid, we will see a lot of frustrated youth looking for quick solutions. Again, I am not here to preach. I just want to my kids to have a better future where values like honesty, honor, integrity, patience, and hard-work are still common.