Why college students fail at adulting

Breanna Roen, Staff Writer

As a twenty-year-old in my third year of college, I am so thankful my mom has taught me the basics of balancing a checkbook, cooking, cleaning and other life skills in order to be a functioning human. I know we all see pictures with the quotes “I wish I learned how to do taxes and know what insurance plans to look for, but thank god I know the Pythagorean theorem.”

I have had my fair share of situations where I need to call my mom to figure out how to handle an “adult” situation. One of the classes you can take on our fantastic campus is a class on “adulting.” We have seen the signs and flyers located all over campus to enroll in this class if you have problems “wearing pants” and other adult things.

Is there a reason people above the age of twenty can’t cook for themselves or do basic adult objectives? Let’s examine what has lead to the decline of teaching our generation the fundamentals of being an adult.

Many of our mothers have told us the tales of their high school days in home economics class. When I was a little girl I was so excited to go into a class about cooking and sewing and doing adult things. At my school it was a course that was offered in the tenth grade and up. When I reached my high school years, I was very disappointed to find out my school cut out the home economics class.

As a young girl who was so excited to learn all the important skills this class had to offer, I was very disappointed when I had to take trigonometry instead. Before I knew it, it wasn’t just my school who cut the class; it was many schools in my surrounding area, as well.

I’ve always heard how schools were cutting secondary classes and programs to fuel the revenue generated with sports teams and facilities. By cutting one specific area, another area’s equipment and other resources will increase.

The same goes for fine arts programs. We hear all around the nation how fine arts programs are being cut to save money or provide funds to other areas, mainly sports or expansions of school technology and buildings.

But why is one simple class so important?

Home economics teaches you the fundamentals of being an adult and prepares teenagers for “the real world.” Home economics teaches teens how to coupon, sew basic stitches, repair certain items in our household, how to decorate, cook and many other important skills. Without the availability of this class basic life lessons are never taught to kids.

When home economics was cut, some parents were generous enough to take the time to teach these skills to their children, like my mom and dad have. The thing that bugs me is when people of an older generation tell us, “How do you not know how to do these basic functions? Quit being lazy and get off your phones and you would.”

A phrase like this irks me to the core. Generalizing all millennials as such will annoy anyone who has learned these skills. Many don’t understand how the older generations have put us at a huge disadvantage by cutting these programs and not teaching us these life skills. Along with the ever-rising inflation on housing and domestic goods, and salaries staying the same, it’s easy to see why some kids prefer to just live at home than live in a rundown apartment for $700 per month.

I am very pleased to see a “home economics” class appear on our campus because we now have the opportunity to learn these skills and use this class as college credit. Hopefully other colleges will implement this ideology and we will see a rise in these programs once again.

Home economics and the teaching of young adults basic life skills is so important and fundamental. I hated sitting through hours of trigonometry and not having to use it since I graduated from high school. Learning the skills of home economics is important because we as young adults can learn these skills and not have to depend on our elders to guide us once they are no longer on this earth.

Breanna Roen is an  opinion writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at [email protected]