Generation WTF*

* (As in, “My time to join the real world had to come now? What. The. F#@&?!?!”)

As told to Mia Gant, Maeghan Ouimet, Jyll Saskin, and Anne Vickman

You come to Boston, Collegetown U.S.A., at the peak of the boom. You graduate this month just as everything’s gone bust. What does it feel like, to be a member of the cursed Class of ’09? It feels like this.

class of 2009

Photograph by Adam Amengual

Aarthi Ramarathnam

MIT / BiologyBaltimore, MD

“I knew I didn’t want to go straight into med school. I interned for Lehman Brothers last summer and had a job offer, but two weeks into my senior year Lehman collapsed, so I applied to consulting firms and ended up at McKinsey. I feel very lucky because it’s been tough for my friends. A lot still don’t have offers, and they all deserve them.”

class of 2009

Photograph by Adam Amengual

Nathan Kuchar

Berklee College of Music / Contemporary Writing and Production | Sydney, Australia

“I got engaged a few months ago, and am getting married in August. Right now, my parents are helping me out financially. They think I’m ridiculous for getting married, but I’d rather do the job-searching stuff with a partner. It’s two people trying to find work instead of one person trying to support him—or herself. She wants to work in urban education. For me, Starbucks is always an option. I hear they have good insurance.

I know what I want to do—go into the jingle business for TV and radio—but I feel like I am not going to be the one to decide. I’m going to have to be at the right place at the right time. The musician’s life is not going to be  grand. You have to work your way up. The economy is just another hurdle.”

class of 2009

Photograph by Adam Amengual

Alexandra Karadimas

Boston University / Public Relations | New Milford, CT

“Every Monday, I’ll apply to at least eight jobs. When I have an interview, I don’t even like to tell my friends, because I don’t want to feel like I’m rubbing it in. Recently, I’ve emailed connections that I’ve made through internships and found that they no longer work there, that they’ve been laid off.”