Once called Generation Y, the “millenial” seems to be the term de rigueur these days. We’re the guys (and gals) who knighted Justin Timberlake and made 90210, Doug, and Ninja Turtles synonymous with 90’s pop culture. We’re the kids who would one day inherit the booming, 90’s economy.
Our parents cheered during our games and clapped after our concerts. They showered us with praise and attention because we were the “baby boomlets”, who deserved nothing less. Our career paths were written in stone. Many of us dreamed of the corner office, of a duplex apartment and of winning the “trial of the (new) century”. We had grandiose goals; all of which could be attained by following a pre-prescribed path.
Or so we were told.
But, this was before the white shower of debris on September 11th. This was before “shock and awe” and the seemingly endless wave of war. This was before the “Great Recession” and the Occupy movements.
We weren’t in the nineties (or Kansas) anymore.
Those of us (like me) who had once eschewed passion in favor of prestige were forced to find ourselves. We (I) needed to find our place in this new, Bizzaro reality in which:
-the once vaunted MBA toppled gracelessly from its pedestal
-some called the J.D. a “toilet degree”
-cash-conscious doctors begged their kids to study engineering
-pink-slipped engineers told their kids to become doctors
-scientists bemoaned career prospects and sought MBAs
-non-scientists rejected the MBA and hailed STEM (science et al.) as the next big thing
-grad schools of education were slammed, but the clarion call for teachers roared
-and some brave (or confused?) souls wanted colleges to disappear altogether
The contradictory clucking and crowing had left me with no choice. I had to set my own priorities and follow my own path. I had to do things independent of the chatter. There was no strategizing to be had.
So, this blog is a collection of my thoughts and experiences as I wade through life on my own terms—as a grad student, a 20-something and as a newly minted Philadelphian.