There’s been an op-ed NY Times article floating around detailing the perils of Wall Street and coining greed as a medical malady called wealth addiction. Attending a prestigious private university comes with some expectations, to say the least. Simply graduating makes us more privileged than a majority of the world, but beyond that we are expected to find “good” careers that are practical and help put money in the bank. By sophomore year, we are expected to know what we plan on studying for the rest of our college career, and by junior and senior year, we’re told to find summer internships that will help build our resume. Ideally, these internships will pave the way for a career that has a salary above the national median. This type of pressure leads to students measuring their success in dollars and their worth by the title of their job.
As this writer has progressed throughout her college career, it feels as though more and more students are turning to finance or business for their post-grad career plans. Students who studied english, engineering, and various other arts and science disciplines find themselves looking toward big banks and big businesses to hire them. This trend is curious; why are so many students diverging from their original studies and looking to go into finance, operations, or management? It cannot be a coincidence that students are turning to business to fulfill their expectations of finding a job that will pay a higher salary than maybe a job within the public sector. There’s a lure to money and it’s scary to think how quickly and easy it can be to feel that more is not enough. Wealth addiction is a novel idea, but one that deserves more attention. It’s akin to alcoholism and like any debilitating addictive habit, it has the potential to ruin not only your life but the lives of those around you.