While studies show that millennials are the most educated generation, the numbers also show that they are also the most unemployed. The value of a Bachelor’s degree is undeniable, but the data indicates that a degree does not guarantee a job. So what can millennials do in college to prepare for the real world? Here are some unexpected courses that 20somethings should consider taking in preparation for adulthood…
1. Toastmasters. Toastmasters International is a highly regarded communication and leadership development club, with locations spread across the United States. For a very minimal cost, Toastmasters hosts hundreds of weekly groups, which meet locally to learn and practice public speaking techniques. Members rave about the experience and often remain in these close-knit chapters for years. The culture is welcoming and encouraging, and the groups can groom just about anyone into a master public speaker. To those who don’t have toastmasters close by their home, it’s always prudent to enroll in a public speaking class. Whether or not you have intentions to become a public speaker, effective communicators succeed in many aspects of their career—including salary negotiation.
2. Wine Tasting. Roughly 15% of the workforce has been alcohol-impaired at some time on the job. Obviously this is a bad idea, but my point is that the workforce loves its booze. Given that networking events and work parties revolve around wine and appetizers, it’s very smart to know your wines. This topic automatically breaks the ice and earns young employees the respect and interest high-level business personnel in many industries. Most colleges have this as an elective.
3. Finance. Student debt has risen since 2006 and now stands at an average of $21k per student. Studies show that women save less than men, and with the concerning political dialogue over social security, it’s clear that millennials must learn how to save and invest their money. Chances are that you’re going to buy a home, have children or seek investments at a later stage in your life. A finance class provides you with a foundation for understanding your options. After all, no one enjoys the overwhelm that comes with the paperwork on your first day of work: 401 what? You got this.