Alarming News

July 6, 2010

Privileged lad with very high-expectations seeks job in crappy market

NY Times Sub-headline: In the Nicholson family, America is not delivering for a grandson as it did for his father and grandfather.

How dare America not be in a perpetual boom? Isn’t there a promise of life, liberty and never having to worry about a thing?

You know who I really don’t worry about? This college-educated guy in his comfortable suburb:

After breakfast, his parents left for their jobs, and Scott Nicholson, alone in the house in this comfortable suburb west of Boston, went to his laptop in the living room. He had placed it on a small table that his mother had used for a vase of flowers until her unemployed son found himself reluctantly stuck at home.

Who, by the way, just turned down a job (and still ended up the focus of a NYT story about how terrible things are for today’s graduates):

Over the last five months, only one job materialized. After several interviews, the Hanover Insurance Group in nearby Worcester offered to hire him as an associate claims adjuster, at $40,000 a year. But even before the formal offer, Mr. Nicholson had decided not to take the job.

So what will Scott do, where will he go? To Europe, it seems:

“I view what is happening to Scott with dismay,” said the grandfather, who has concluded, in part from reading The Economist, that Europe has surpassed America in offering opportunity for an ambitious young man. “We hate to think that Scott will have to leave,” the grandfather said, “but he will.”

Where was the NYT editor to conclude: “wow, this article is ridiculous, maybe we shouldn’t run it.” Where?

Posted by Karol at 10:55 PM |

I cannot believe NYT ran the story & actually wrote it up as poor baby Scott. The kid is beyond lazy to not take a paying a decent salary for a college grad. I haven’t read the whole story but my guess is Scott has a useless degree. Let the lazy kid go to Europe.

Posted by: Heather at July 7, 2010 at 7:15 am

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Heather Buell. Heather Buell said: RT @KarolNYC: I find it hard to feel sorry for some unemployed people: [...]

Posted by: Tweets that mention Privileged lad with very high-expectations seeks job in crappy market -- at July 7, 2010 at 7:35 am

This is absolutely one of the sickest stories I’ve ever read. $40,000 a year is well above the average income for Americans. What I think he should do is go carry some brick and block for a summer, or landscaping, or some physical labor job that will maybe teach him something.

Posted by: Mark at July 7, 2010 at 9:06 am

I’m sure the Europeans will be thrilled to have another person who won’t work unless he finds the perfect job.

Posted by: Eric at July 7, 2010 at 10:01 am

Worried about future, young man rejects job.

The Onion could print this, almost verbatim.

Posted by: Swami at July 7, 2010 at 11:01 am

The kid is stupid, no question. He’s worried about finding the right job for his career paths so he declines the associate claims adjuster job. Doesn’t make sense, I know. But to be just a little fairer, he didn’t apply for that job. He had applied to the management training course within the company and had been rejected. It was Hanover who called him back to offer him the associate claims adjuster position. This is kind of the equivalent of applying to be a banker and being told that they have nothing for you, except a job sweeping the floors at night, but hey it’s still in the bank!

Now, if I was him, I would have taken the $40,000 a year job and still looked for my perfect job only because I was raised to be self-sufficient and I would be mortified to have my parents pay for anything I was doing. I’ve been completely on my own since I was 20 years old and $40,000 is a pretty good start towards something better.

The kid isn’t lazy, per se. He does try to pick up some of the slack by doing odd manual labor jobs here and there (putting in a fence was mentioned). What he is is entitled and a bit lacking in vision. Like most kids coming out of school today, he feels a college education should be enough to make him a manager at a large financial firm, or something similar. But those days are gone, if they ever existed in the first place. You have to show you’re a real asset to a company before they’ll even hire you and that’s for a ground floor position.

Also, the Europe thing was his Grandfather’s stupid comment. The kid never had any intention of moving there. Just saying.

Posted by: Jamie at July 7, 2010 at 12:53 pm

I have no sympathy for recent graduates, none at all. They owe the job market right now.
It’s us, the people in the middle, every HR avert their eyes from.
He applied for a management course, was rejected and then was offered a job? That could never happen to someone with 15 years experience – they will reject you exactly because you have managerial pre-requisite; they will never offer you a job, not $40K, nor even $20K – because they already deemed you “overqualified”. They know oyu’re capable of doing the work 3 times better than the freshface whatsaname; they just don’t want you. That’s it: you don’t exist.

And these kids have no obligations, no rent to pay, no family to support – but they are given preference where job prospects are concerned -just because their tender sensibilities: how awful, to have your dreams crushed, poor baby!here’ get a $40K job on a plate.

Posted by: Tatyana at July 7, 2010 at 1:47 pm

Agreed. The expectations of this generation and that of the millenials (90’s grads) are extremely out of touch with today’s reality. People who raise their kids to be spoiled and entitled are creating a generation of whiners and slackers. About the only point I’ll grant to the new grads entering the workforce is that it is true that the work you choose immediately after graduating does matter in determining your earning capacity for years to come. Those rules were “written” long before our current economic condition. As long as you’re looking for someone to hire you (ie not self-employed), employers look at your track record (including salary history) to determine what they can get your services for. If job has a salary range of between $30K and $40K/ year, An HR person isn’t going to offer $40 K/ year to a new hire who has never earned more than $28K for doing comparable work. As a business owner, of course, you want to get the biggest return on your payroll, so you find the best qualified, hardest working employees at the lowest wage they will accept. The unskilled are fucked. And, in this economy, beggars can’t be choosers. Take what you can get until the economy turns around and always network. Or, like me, go back to school and learn a trade or upgrade your skills to match the needs of what industries demand.
Scott Nicholson’s family apparently haven’t been paying attention to what’s going on in the world since they graduated college- otherwise, they wouldn’t be surprised- and might have offered better advice to their kid. As far as going to Europe for better opportunities… good luck.

Posted by: kostas at July 7, 2010 at 5:20 pm

“Trend Stories” like this are a result of the media’s connection with web SEO tactics. Have you ever noticed that a flurry of stories on one topic appear in clusters? Right now, “college educated and unemployed” is a hot topic.

Posted by: Kevin Raffay at July 8, 2010 at 4:12 pm

if its on the internet then it must be true ;-)

Posted by: drink from my clay cup at July 13, 2010 at 1:59 am
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