TIME Magazine Millennials: College Graduates Should Expect to Live Long, Healthy Lives In Which They Will Never Stop Working

It’s that time of year again. Summer is around the corner, the days are getting a little longer, and people from an older generation of academia are gallivanting across the country, offering their advice to cap-and-gowned college graduates in universities nationwide.

Jason Gay, a sportswriter for the Wall Street Journal, tried to take a funny and light-hearted approach to his list of real-world rules. The first? “Relax. Nobody expects anything from you for the first 80 to 90 years.”

Well, Mr. Gay, I get what you’re playing with here. I’m going to live a long life. In fact, life expectancy has been on a steady rise from 69.77 years in 1960 to 75.2 in 1990. So, if I am able regulate my exercise and my consumption habits, I will have effectively taken my sip from the proverbial fountain of youth. Okay. But what I’m not getting is this suggestion that I can just put the world on hold for a while until I feel like contributing to it. In fact, because of the state of the nation that you and your generation left me with, there’s really even less time for me to “walk around Barcelona barefoot” than there may have been for you.

Now, listen, I know Gay was kidding in his compounded list. Please don’t think I’m actually in any way upset with the author. But know that it is also no joke that with the projected longevity of our lives, millennials should be preparing for 60 or more years of work in multiple different career fields. And new college grads might also have to work a wee bit harder than previous generations at keeping themselves gainfully employed. The increasingly faster pace of changes in technology and the global economy will present a premium placed on keeping skills and knowledge current in the upcoming years. And with student debt at an all-time high, there aren’t many new graduates who will be frolicking around waiting for their interest to accrue. The time to work is now.

The good news: if scientific and health research advancements pan out as they are projected to, I will be able to live a long, healthy, fulfilling life. But please, Mr. Gay, understand that the new world for millennial college graduates is not going to stand idly by until we’re ready. It’s going to pull us in quickly and hold us there tight for a good long while.

How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Addison Williams

Undergraduate Georgetown University student studying Government with a concentration in Foreign Affairs. Hailing from Boston, MA but with a heart that will forever lie in the mountains. Sports, politics, music, theater, art, and hip hop culture are of interest. Eclectic, I guess, would suffice.

MORE FROM

Dow Jones won’t talk about its reported pay gap problem

A study released by the union representing Dow Jones employees found evidence of a "significant pay gap between men and women" who had the same job title and level of experience.

Mom slams ACA repeal, shows what's at stake in a tweetstorm about son's health

This mom says that without the ACA, her son wouldn't get the medical care he desperately needs.

Theresa May announces pact with Northern Ireland's conservative DUP

10 of the DUP's MPs will vote alongside May's party in exchange for more than $1 billion of funds.

Supreme Court will hear case of baker who refused service to gay couples on religious grounds

The Supreme Court will take on the case of a bakery owner who refused to bake a cake for a gay couple.

'Hot Mic' podcast: Health care opposition, Trump on Russian meddling & Pakistan tanker explosion

The important stories to get you caught up for Monday morning.

Dozens missing after tourist boat carrying more than 160 passengers sinks in Colombia

At least six people are confirmed dead and dozens more unaccounted for.

Dow Jones won’t talk about its reported pay gap problem

A study released by the union representing Dow Jones employees found evidence of a "significant pay gap between men and women" who had the same job title and level of experience.

Mom slams ACA repeal, shows what's at stake in a tweetstorm about son's health

This mom says that without the ACA, her son wouldn't get the medical care he desperately needs.

Theresa May announces pact with Northern Ireland's conservative DUP

10 of the DUP's MPs will vote alongside May's party in exchange for more than $1 billion of funds.

Supreme Court will hear case of baker who refused service to gay couples on religious grounds

The Supreme Court will take on the case of a bakery owner who refused to bake a cake for a gay couple.

'Hot Mic' podcast: Health care opposition, Trump on Russian meddling & Pakistan tanker explosion

The important stories to get you caught up for Monday morning.

Dozens missing after tourist boat carrying more than 160 passengers sinks in Colombia

At least six people are confirmed dead and dozens more unaccounted for.