Wednesday, May 28, 2008

It's NOT just me!

For the last couple of years I've been noticing something about the last few crops of masters and doctoral students entering the program I work for. It is this: We are currently seeing a generation of the most spoiled, self-absorbed, arrogant little bastards EVER to enter higher education and the work force. The first thing they do on entering the program, before they've even finished a semester's worth of classes, is bitch about something. They get courted by our faculty, apply to the program, get accepted, get funded like I've never seen a group of students get funded, (most FULLY funded through fellowships and grants), and yet...and YET - the complaints about how the program is run, the classes offered, the program requirements, time limits, even the level of intellectual vigor - are all I'm hearing. We even had one, before he even started the program, complaining to a donor that he had not received the fellowship he thought he deserved. It got back to our dean, causing a whole lot of sturm and drang about the...what's the word, unfairness of it? Unfairness bollocks. This is just one small case in point - but it's indicative of the trend with this crew - they'd rather complain and claim phantom abuses than try to accept the possibility that SOMEONE out there MAY have been an eentsy bit more deserving.
Are we dealing with the first generation for whom there was ALWAYS a chair at musical chairs? Is this the crew that received a trophy for running the race, whether they came in first or dead last? Is this what happens when an entire generation is raised to believe that they are the center of the universe because mommy and daddy and Mr. Rogers say so?
I have been thinking about this a lot, and at first I was just wondering whether it was a function of my age - as in, 'oh, kids today - they have it SO EASY. They have no idea how to work hard, what it's like to not have everything handed to them, yadda, yadda..." And I was SURE I was just being and old grouch, letting my envy get the better of me.
But here's the thing: It's come to my attention that I'm not the only person noticing. They were recently profiled on 60 Minutes and I recognized them immediately. Seems they're called the "Millenials" and they are making me seethe. You little 'I'm special' fuckers, whose parents worshipped the shit out of you need to wake up and stop behaving as though the world owes you something just for being you. Sit down, shut the fuck up, and learn something.
I hope this little experiment has failed. Let's go back to trophies only for first and second place, winners and losers, and kids learning the lesson that the world does not revolve around their spoiled little arses.


Blogger fatmammycat said...

Entitlement, they haz it, the ungrateful little whelps. It's like the multi- mobile phone owning, Prada wearing OC sounding shit youthful brats we have over here. Are they happy? Are they fuck. The more they have the more miserable they are and the more their sense of entitlement grows.

28 May, 2008 16:33  
Blogger Medbh said...

Preach it, sister.
When I was an M.A. student those fucking kids never did the reading and complained and moaned about the really light work load. If you strived to do well, they shredded you with gossip and taunts. And practically NONE OF THEM had ever had to hold a job on their own or pay their own way. One 23 yr. old girl (she was like a kid though normally I would say woman) had her parents BUY her a house while she slacked off.
The folks in the Ph.D. program were a damn sight better, but even then there was much bitching about the reading load, presentations and essays due.
It's not you, Andraste.
It's them.

28 May, 2008 23:25  
Blogger MikeP said...

You have hit the nail right on the head! This year, our grad program in English lit. decided to eliminate the Master's exam covering 35 authors, because the students were too stressed out! Crybabies!

29 May, 2008 11:08  
Blogger Sam, Problem-Child-Bride said...

Ssssh, Andraste! You musn't upset their self-esteem.

I reckon all kids should have to have a Saturday job like we all had. It teaches them the value of a buck, and also a bit of damned humility: it's not all about you sunshine!

29 May, 2008 11:46  
Blogger DeadpanAnn said...

Damn straight and amen sister. I teach 8th grade, and the culture of the school (or the community or something) makes it very difficult for us to do anything other than pat everyone on the head regardless of how bad they suck and how little work they do. They give out awards for every damn thing, and the standards are so low it hurts. I was told I could give out the English award to a student based on "attitude." WTF?? How about their ability to use a fucking period at the end of a sentence? How bout that? Cause out of 80 students, I probably had 5 who used end punctuation on a regular basis. I shit you not. I never got a fucking award for shit, and I was very much above average as a student.

01 June, 2008 12:54  
Blogger laughykate said...

What they need is to have been so poor that they had to share gumboots with a sibling and hop to school.

Oh how I reckon this indulgence/pampering has really spoilt a whole lot of yoof. What's wrong with no ?

01 June, 2008 22:32  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Hope you're okay ducks. Haven't seen you about this week.

08 June, 2008 14:59  
Blogger Andraste said...

Thanks, Cat. yeah, I'm fine - just insanely busy - again.

Might have something to say soon,though. Watch this space!

09 June, 2008 10:02  
Blogger Dr Maroon said...

Alas alas and alackaday poor rabbit girl. You have articulated perfectly what I think too. I say alas however because it means as surely as anything that you have joined me on that ever decreasing spiral of old grumpiness that is the curse of enlightenment when we start to outdo the sayings of our parents.
Shrug it off! Have a drink, kiss a stranger (a good looking one), smoke some weed, spit the arrow of time in the eye, always remembering that in 20 years time these self same spoilt brats will be telling everyone how they only ever had roast beef on their birthdays and i-pods were steam powered and would only store 200 000 songs (and the music was better then, not all this melodic shit you get nowadays)...

10 June, 2008 16:34  
Blogger daisy mae said...

oh too funny, although i will admit that as a first year grad student i raised hell first semester. at least i feel it was warranted.... i was courted by the school, fell in love, and promised a full fellowship for 4 years. oh tra la off we went.... sold everything we owned so we could move the family 2000 miles away.....

only to find out ha! the fellowship is only for the first year . after that we're on our own (now that i'm established in a lab, not so big a deal as it seemed). even though i had it in writing that i would be receiving a full 4 year fellowship, there was some hand waving and voodoo administrative magic, and bam! nope, oops, our mistake. enjoy your stay!

needless to say, i DO know the students you're referring to... the ones who complain about entry exams, and having to actually work.

11 June, 2008 21:53  
Blogger MairĂ©ad said...

I see them too, at first, second and third level!
It's the parents! The parents want to be FRIENDS with their kids now, they want to be LIKED, and will do anything, buy anything, agree to anything in the mistaken hope that their kids will like them. they don't and they don't like themselves either poor things. The attitude though - WOW! They think they have a supreme right to everything, just because they breathe! I'm not a fan of competitiveness either though, that brings out nasty streaks and is a poor management style, but hell, people have to know that they must EARN what they get / have!!

25 June, 2008 13:58  

Post a Comment

<< Home