Friday, August 06, 2010

Best Laid Plans

From a young age, she was exposed to learning. Like so many others in the town, she was writing the alphabet by the age of three and had begun to master a few simple reading skills before kindergarten began.

She would have to work her way into the accelerated learning program. It was the road to success in the adult world. Work hard, she was told, study hard. Get ahead.

The select program in elementary school pushed her ahead of the pack, so that by the time she reached secondary school she was taking college level coursework. Not to ignore the incidentals, she had dance lessons and studied piano. Got involved in school activities. Crafted a thick resume of top grades and creative endeavours. Every minute of every day rattled with keys to future success.

Ivy League university followed, as planned. The route was clearly marked. A course of study in the business field, to become a banker or highly placed executive in a Fortune 500 company. No pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, but a six-figure salary was a desirable prize.

In all the twenty-one years of careful planning, no consideration was given to an unemployment rate hovering around 10%. The finest education, and she has no job. Neither has she any nibbles on resumes or interviews. Nothing.

There is no work for college graduates. Hard work, an over-scheduled life, and she waits tables for a pittance on a part-time basis, her summer job for the past four years becoming her occupation.

Those who study such things claim that she'll never catch up, even if the job market turns around in the next year.

A parent can plan, but they can't control the random throw of the dice that is the free market which send the best laid plans astray.

No comments: