Monday, July 20, 2009

The Economy and Our Undergraduate Students

As an undergraduate, my sorority sisters and I spent most of our meager salaries on restaurant meals, shopping, road trips, movies, and weekend "entertainment". I know that this is the budget for most active undergraduates. However, I know that current undergraduates might not be able to live such a "lavish, fun-filled" lifestyle in this economy.

Some of the undergraduates in my classes went on road trips to South Padre Island for Spring Break. However, most of the undergraduates went to their hometown to make money at their old part-time jobs. When I was in college, it was an anomaly to hear that one of our classmates went home during spring break to work.

In addition to working during spring break, my undergraduates' persuasive speech topics have changed as well. I give them a choice of the following topics: (a) to persuade my audience to perform an act of service, (b) to persuade my audience to purchase a particular product, (c) to persuade my audience to adopt a money saving strategy. Consistently, the undergraduates usually choose option "a" or "c". Through topic "c", they advocate using coupons, living off campus, cooking meals at home, etc.

This frugal lifestyle for undergraduates also expands to include new graduates. An article in USA Today, "Recession generation? Young adults brace for simpler lifestyle" focuses on how recent graduates are coping with the new economy.

What are your opinions of our newly frugal undergraduates?
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