My profile today is on Max Menard, Georgetown class of 2016, who also goes by Nard-dog Menard.
First, just tell us a little bit about yourself–where you’re from, what you studied, where you went to school, what you’re doing now in your final semester. Any plans for post-graduation?
I am a proud New Englander from a small town right outside of Worcester, Massachusetts. I’m currently a senior in the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown studying International Political Economy.
I am on the lightweight crew team, work at the library, and am a board member of Georgetown Energy, a club that works to add renewable energy and energy efficiency measures on campus, in the community, and around the world.
I haven’t accepted any job offer yet, but I am interested in jobs on the financial side of renewable energy. Ultimately, I plan on getting a masters degree in a couple of years and then going from there.
What aspects of your life during this transition make you feel like a kid, and which make you feel like an adult?
I feel a lot like I did as a senior in high school; I’m excited to join the real world and be an adult but at the same time I don’t want to leave my friends and my life as a student that I’ve gotten used to. I don’t think I’ll ever feel like an adult until I’m like 50 or so.
What parts of adulting terrify you?
Getting a job and probably the first month or so on the job. I hate not knowing what the hell I’m supposed to do or feeling like I’m not doing my job well.
Do you expect there to be notable differences in joining the “real world” or being a twenty-something?
I’m preparing for less Netflix, better beer, and no more snow days. But in all honesty, I expect there’s more responsibility and less of a safety net in the real world.
What do you feel like is expected of people in our generation that maybe wasn’t expected of our parents?
I feel like we’re more pressured to be happy and find a job that we love. Old people complain that we were pampered growing up and were told we could be whatever we want, and I think there might be some truth to that. Yet while they may see the problem as our generation feeling entitled to everything I think it might more so be that if we don’t land a dream job then somehow we let ourselves and our family down who never had the opportunities that we have.
What do you wish we’d been taught in college about “the real world” that isn’t taught?
How to do your taxes. And courtship.
The Millennial generation is often called the “me me me” generation. Would you agree with this depiction? How would you describe Millennials in three words?
I think every generation has those who feel entitled to things, and that the generational difference is the things people feel entitled to. Those who grew up during the Cold War might have felt entitled to live in a world free of the threat of nuclear destruction. Because we grew up in the 90s with no real security threat we’re more apt to feel entitled to economic or social things.
Three words? Maybe creative, ignorant, and idealistic. That’s one positive, one negative, and one wildcard 🙂
Any book recommendations for early twenty-somethings?
I highly recommend books by Kim Stanley Robinson and Harry Turtledove. Kim Stanley Robinson is big on hard science fiction, or sci-fi that is based on real-world scientific facts. His most famous—and my favorite series—of his is about the colonization of Mars. I’m also a big fan of alternative history, or stories where the author changes one thing in history and speculates how the world would have been different as a result. Harry Turtledove and Kim Stanley Robinson both have a couple of great alt-history series.