The Media’s Narrative on Millennials is Dead Wrong
Why my Summer with three Millennials was nothing like the pundits describe
Much has been written about Millennials: they’re lazy, entitled, they lack proper social skills, etc., etc., etc. As a father of two young boys, I have spent a lot of time thinking about what my wife and I can do to ensure that our kids don’t turn out to be the “typical Millennials”.
So when we had the opportunity to hire three college Summer Interns from our alma maters at our startup in Boston, I was skeptical that it would turn out to be a lot of hand-holding and babysitting in exchange for very little value. However, given the work we had ahead of ourselves, we decided it was worth a shot.
After spending the summer with Julia Rosen, Ethan Blitstein and Ian Lapham, every pejorative associated with Millennials has been debunked. While it may be the case that we found the only Millennials that are smart, conscientious, hard-working respectful, outgoing and ambitious, I find it hard to believe. Instead, I think this generation is full of intelligent, talented and creative young people that when given the right opportunity will amaze us all.
To make my argument, let me tell you about our Summer Interns. Julia is a rising Junior at Bates College. She is from Springfield, IL, a Math major and a member of the Varsity Soccer Team. Ethan is also a rising Junior at Bates College. He is from Scarsdale, NY, a Math major, Spanish minor and the Site Director for Let’s Get Ready, a non-profit that provides low-income high school students with free SAT prep. Ian Lapham is a rising Junior at Brown University. He is from Reading, MA, an Economics major and Computer Science minor and the Director of Marketing for the Brown Entrepreneurship Program.
This summer, Julia, Ethan and Ian quickly became critical members of the team at RateGravity and took on projects that will have a lasting impact on our company. In particular, Julia and Ethan put their math acumen to work by helping us to develop an innovative predictive analytics tool that will transform the way buyers find the most suitable lender for home financing. Meanwhile, Ian worked with our engineering team to develop our Education Center, which will be a central part of our website.
Collectively, Julia, Ethan and Ian were responsible for producing social media content and presenting strategies for improving our reach to their contemporaries. This was in addition to their more mundane daily tasks that are not the glamorous ones that get written about in articles, but are imperative to the day-to-day activities of the business. Regardless of the task, all three showed an ability to learn new concepts quickly, challenged conventional norms, worked diligently and did it with a positive and respectful attitude.
So while America frets about its future because our next generation of leaders will be comprised of Millennials, I take solace knowing the future is bright and we are in good hands. Moreover, I hope that my co-founders and I have upheld our end of the bargain and provided a healthy work environment with exciting projects and a positive culture so that next year when Julia, Ethan and Ian are looking for their Summer Internships, they will look no further than RateGravity!
To Julia, Ethan and Ian:
Thank you for all your hard work this summer. You made a lasting imprint on our company and you should be proud of all your work. We have been honored to have you as members of our team and you will always be welcome at RateGravity. We hope that you enjoyed your experience and that you learned as much from us as we did from you. We had a great time and we’ll miss having you around. We look forward to watching you grow personally and professionally, and we have no doubt that you will all be stars no matter what you choose to do.
Patrick, Mike and Brent