Sunday, August 03, 2008

In response to Millennials - they're not all that!

Andrew K. comments on the previous post:

We could always be curmudgeonly together? I have no doubt that there is going to be something very problematic that eventually comes out of this generation's sense of entitlement... these are the kids whose parents put them in t-ball leagues where they didn't keep score, or who grew up hearing that it didn't matter if they succeeded or not, as long as they had tried. There was actually a great piece on 60 Minutes within the last year about this generation in the workplace: one notable vignette involved a parent calling their child's workplace to complain about his quarterly review. "I don't think this review reflects an adequate appreciation for all that my Johnny is capable of doing." AH!

What really interests me is when this generation, if it is to be defined by these largely negative qualities, really begins. Of course such delineation is going to be fluid, but I have observed a great difference between my childhood experience and that of my good friends, on the one hand, and, on the other, the experiences of my little brother's friends. I think I would have to place the "terminus a quo" somewhere in between.

It must be very soon after me, though, and there are a few things that make me think that. The difference between my class and the following class at Dartmouth is a great example. It was a member of the class of 2007 -- what an honor this is -- who was the first person at Dartmouth to have his parents call a professor (and then, when the professor was not responsive, the academic dean) to insist that his grade be changed. As though the grade inflation that exists weren't enough.

Ah, well, I guess we won't see the effects of it until -- shudder -- these people are in positions of authority.

All best,
Facebook email, August 3, 2008.

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