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I am 35 years old—the oldest millennial, the first millennial—and for a decade now, I’ve been waiting for adulthood to kick in.
My rent consumes nearly half my income, I haven’t had a steady job since Pluto was a planet and my savings are dwindling faster than the ice caps the baby boomers melted. More millennials live with their parents than with roommates.
In 2008 we weren’t hiring graduates, let’s hire all the people we passed over.’ No, they hired the class of 2012.”You can even see this in the statistics, a divot from 2008 to 2012 where millions of jobs and billions in earnings should be.
In 2007, more than 50 percent of college graduates had a job offer lined up.
Every stereotype of our generation applies only to the tiniest, richest, whitest sliver of young people.
And the circumstances we live in are more dire than most people realize.
“A lot of workers were just 18 at the wrong time,” says William Spriggs, an economics professor at Howard University and an assistant secretary for policy at the Department of Labor in the Obama administration.
And the opportunities leading to a middle-class life—the ones that boomers lucked into—are being lifted out of our reach.But generalizations about millennials, like those about any other arbitrarily defined group of 75 million people, fall apart under the slightest scrutiny.Contrary to the cliché, the vast majority of millennials did not go to college, do not work as baristas and cannot lean on their parents for help.The other applicants described their corporate jobs and listed off graduate degrees. “One time the HR rep told us she did these three times a week,” Scott says.
“And I just knew I was never going to get a job.”After six months of applying and interviewing and never hearing back, Scott returned to his high school job at The Old Spaghetti Factory. He still lives at home, chipping in a few hundred bucks every month to help his mom pay the rent.What is different about us as individuals compared to previous generations is minor.