Rewind: Revisiting the Floating Generation

One of my very first posts was about this idea of the floating generation, and how I felt my life heading in that direction.  I feel like I'm being told from everywhere that no one expects much from me when I've graduated because of this phenomena.  There are articles everyone on Thought Catalog and Buzzfeed saying that 20-somethings don't know where they are going in life.  It portrays us (because I'm now 20, I can include myself) as a group of people mooching off of society, spending every night out drinking, and wasting our time trying to intellectually better ourselves without a practical purpose.  I hate that I used to think that this view described me.  

As I inch closer to graduation, I feel like I know where I'm going.  I know what I want to do and how to get there.  My situation may be slightly unusual, but I don't think people my age are given the credit they deserve in planning ahead.  Choosing a career and a path in life isn't easy, and it isn't something people should want college students to decide as soon as they walk though the gates.  You wouldn't want a doctor or lawyer to have gone into their profession because it's what they thought about doing their first day of freshman year, never questioning their decision again!  Plus there are more new careers every day as technology advances and the job market in our country transitions even further away from industrial and goods producing.  Maybe I'm biased because Columbia's method of education seems to be to prepare you for grad school to prepare you for a career, but these are the last four years where you can learn how to think and interact with the world.  Taking a philosophy class isn't useless when it teaches you to engage in the world and deliberate about the choices you make in any field.  If anything, a philosophy class may be more useful to both the individual and those who they influence than an accounting class, where your skill is only applicable in one area.  But I digress; this post isn't about The Core.

This issue is much bigger than one blog post can hold, but what it comes down to is that the job market is changing, and we have to figure out how to navigate it.  Picking a plan of action from the outset will backfire if the job is gone before graduation.  

What is for sure, though, is that all of the 20-somethings I know have really got it together.  They know their direction in life, or at least know what they're passionate about.  It took me a whole year to give into my passions, and I'm at a school where there is no degree for my chosen career path.  From the outside it may look like I'm guilty of wasting four years studying African Studies for no real reason except bettering myself intellectually.  

But I know where I'm going in life; and I'm certainly not floating.  


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Meet The Author

I'm Madysen, born and raised in Nebraska but now living out my dreams in New York City. I moved here to go to Columbia, but living in New York has become so much more to me. This blog is a space where I can share my experiences of reconciling my midwestern upbringing with the life I live in the city. But even bigger than that, this blog serves as a space where I can try to understand where I fit into the larger social world, where I want to go in life, and how I want to go about pursuing all of these endeavors.

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