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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    “Mommy, I want to come home”

    If you want to make any senior cringe, just utter the words, “”What are you doing after graduation?”” One of the most common replies is, “”Moving back to my parents’ house.””

    This is odd, seeing that at the beginning of college most students are begging to get away from their parents. But this plan is becoming all too common. In a survey of college students on www.MonsterTRAK.com, 60 percent said they planned to live at home after graduation and 21 percent said they planned to remain there for more than one year. Those who plan on moving back in with the folks have been termed “”boomerangers.””

    Why is it that such a large number of students are moving back home after graduation? Many articles on the topic have suggested that rising housing costs, higher student loans, a harsher job market and a closer connection to mom and dad are to blame.

    However, these are just excuses for the real crux of the problem. Our generation is just not accustomed to having to work for anything and does not wish to sacrifice its current way of living.

    Let’s take a minute to debunk all the excuses college students have come up with. Marie Rozenblit, director of Career Services, reports that the job outlook for new college graduates is very strong.

    “”We have had an increase in the number of employers coming to campus for career fairs, campus interviewing, and rǸsumǸ referrals,”” she says. “”The jobs are there. We just need students to take advantage of these opportunities available to them through Career Services.””

    Another excuse is that living rent-free allows us to save for a house. While owning a house is a laudable goal, it might not be the best decision when we are recent graduates struggling for cash. Former Wildcat columnist Ryan Johnson wrote last semester that when you consider the average mortgage of a two-bedroom house is $1,400 per month, and that houses are currently depreciating in price, renting is a much smarter decision.

    Rent is cheaper, there is less responsibility, and there is no risk of losing money when it is time to move. Furthermore, as new, young hires, we are likely to be relocated or asked to travel. Being tied down to a house is not conducive to this.

    True, we are closer to our parents than previous generations. But there comes a point when this can be detrimental to a person’s development.

    According to Newsweek, campus career counselors have seen a dramatic increase of calls from parents wanting to help their children in the job search. That is a little much. If our parents continually fight our battles, we are not going to learn basic life skills such as how to write a rǸsumǸ or how to do laundry.

    And yes, the average UA student will leave here about $16,000 in the hole. But according to figures from the U.S. Census Bureau, a college degree means we will be making $20,000 more per year than someone with a high school diploma. This makes our debts seem minimal and payable in hindsight.

    Let’s take a second and think back to the reason we chose to go to college in the first place. It might have been for the better income, for the life experiences or for the education. But I guarantee it wasn’t so we could move back in with our parents afterwards. On the contrary, we went to college so we could have the means to live on our own.

    So I offer this challenge to my fellow graduates (including myself): Let’s use our degrees that we worked so hard to obtain and get a job. The UA Job Fair on April 3-4 would be a great place to start.

    Let’s create a budget and a plan as to how we are going to start paying off those loans. Let’s find a cheap place to rent and a couple of roommates. Let’s go out into the world and make a name for ourselves instead of falling backwards into the comfort of our childhood homes.

    Jessica Wertz is a senior majoring in psychology and family studies and human development. She can be reached at letters@wildcat.arizona.edu

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