Youth Edition of the Facilitator’s Guide Available

Posted September 30, 2009 in Blog

Thanks to our studious and charming intern Evan Easterbrooks-Dick, we were able to spend part of the summer researching the specific economic issues that effect young people (between the ages of the 18 and 30, approximately).  Unlike any previous generation, young people today are leaving school with tremendous burdens that affect the success of their careers and personal lives.

The “debt for diploma” system means that college grads are amassing student loans to make it through college. The average student loan debt is $20,000 for college graduates, with many graduates carrying a great deal more than that. There are few entry-level jobs that pay well enough to allow former students to address this debt while also saving for a home, and getting equipped for adult life. Then having a kid or two sets you way back, and so many couples delay it. Life can begin to seem like something that’s always about to get started, as soon as the loans are paid off and you get that better job…

Older folks often berate the younger generations for their lack of thrift and high expectations for immediate rewards after college. While there may be some truth in that, they could benefit from checking out the CSC curriculum piece on the”risk shift” of the last 40 years (detailed in the Facilitator’s Guide). The Great Generation and the Baby Boomers enjoyed social protections that have been deliberately withdrawn under recent conservative governments. A little historical context helps us all to shift the blame away from the younger generations.

Evan’s youth, and his experiences as a student at Tufts University, helped him create a version of the Resilience Circle Facilitator’s Guide that is geared towards young people.  Some of his primary sources were Tamara Draut’s excellent book Strapped, and the research of the Demos Foundation on student loan debt, and the exploitative tactics that credit card companies use to hook students into overspending, before they have a mature understanding of their financial lives.

If you work with young people or students, or are in this age bracket and would like to start a CSC with your peers, please request the Special Youth Edition of the Facilitator’s Guide. Write to Andree@commonsecurityclub.org