Saturday, 16 February 2008

the organization kid

From the organization kids being bred at Princeton -

[...]But nowhere did I find any real unhappiness with this state of affairs; nowhere did I find anybody who seriously considered living any other way. These super-accomplished kids aren't working so hard because they are compelled to. They are facing, it still appears, the sweetest job market in the nation's history. Investment banks flood the campus looking for hires. Princeton also offers a multitude of post-graduation service jobs in places like China and Africa. Everyone I spoke to felt confident that he or she could get a good job after graduation. Nor do these students seem driven by some Puritan work ethic deep in their cultural memory. It's not the stick that drives them on, it's the carrot. Opportunity lures them. And at a place like Princeton, in a rich information-age country like America, promises of enjoyable work abound—at least for people as smart and ambitious as these. "I want to be this busy," one young woman insisted, after she had described a daily schedule that would count as slave-driving if it were imposed on anyone.

[snip]

In short, at the top of the meritocratic ladder we have in America a generation of students who are extraordinarily bright, morally earnest, and incredibly industrious. They like to study and socialize in groups. They create and join organizations with great enthusiasm. They are responsible, safety-conscious, and mature. They feel no compelling need to rebel—not even a hint of one. They not only defer to authority; they admire it. "Alienation" is a word one almost never hears from them. They regard the universe as beneficent, orderly, and meaningful. At the schools and colleges where the next leadership class is being bred, one finds not angry revolutionaries, despondent slackers, or dark cynics but the Organization Kid.

[big snip]

Maybe the lives of the meritocrats are so crammed because the stakes are so small. All this ambition and aspiration is looking for new tests to ace, new clubs to be president of, new services to perform, but finding that none of these challenges is the ultimate challenge, and none of the rewards is the ultimate reward.

I am afraid students at IIMB (and at other elite institutes) more or less belong to the same class - self-imposed workaholism, no motivation to question authority (rational ignorance) and no motivation to get hands dirty (high opportunity costs). I am not sure where I belong, but it does sound disturbing. Something needs to change.

(Link from India Uncut)

3 comments:

sonik said...

why the need to rebel or question authority when one day these kids might (and surely will) themselves become authority?

Kartik said...

if you cant beat them, join them

though i'd keep trying to beat them if i know i am right and i dont want to be a hypocrite

Ajit Bhide said...

kaaaaaaaaaaartik!!!!!