Is the American Dream Far-Fetched for Millennials?

Many Americans across the United States of America have always dreamed of a middle-class lifestyle with a white picket fence and 2.5 kids. The idea of living the American Dream can be traced back to the ideals that this country was founded on. This so-called dream is usually defined as being the opportunity for all citizens to achieve their goals and become successful if they work hard enough. However, in today’s economy some Americans have started to question the attainability of the “American Dream.”

Is the American Dream Far-Fetched for Millennials?

Millennials in America are entering the workforce at a time when good jobs are hard to find and career advancement is an endless struggle. Around 60% of all millennials do not have a college degree. Even young people with college degrees are finding work in entry-level jobs that don’t require a four-year university education.

According to research by the Economic Policy Institute, the wages for recent college graduates (adjusted for inflation) have fallen 7.7% since 2000. While numerous facets of the economy have recovered from the recession, the youth unemployment rate has remained high, especially among African Americans. Young adults have been one of the demographics hardest hit by the recession.

In 2016 there were 5.5 million young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 disconnected from school and work. Unemployment for this group is double the national average and youth disconnection rates remain higher than pre-recession rates.

The Good News

Even though some of the statistics concerning the economy doesn’t always paint the picture of hope for the American people. However, there is some good news the unemployment rate is at its lowest since 2008 and access to job opportunities has increased steadily since 2011. During my research, I’ve discovered that the nation’s uneven and unpredictable economic recovery – while we have made improvement, it is clear that there is a great deal more that needs to be done.

What are your thoughts? Do you think the American Dream is out of reach in today society? Comment below and if you liked this article please share!

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About Jay Colby

Some would categorize me as an entrepreneur, life coach, son, friend and all of the above. I’m just another person trying to find my way in this world. Until recently, I was unsure what my path in this life would consist of. Like many others I was between I know what I want to do but not sure if that’s what I’m supposed to do. I am currently finishing my degree in something that has nothing to do with becoming a writer or entrepreneur so automatically it qualifies me to become one right! Follow me as I go through this journey called life to impact and encourage one person at a time.
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23 Responses to Is the American Dream Far-Fetched for Millennials?

  1. I don’t think most Millenials have the white-picket dream. The majority that I have met invest in experiences, working just enough to quit their dead end job and travel, only to return and repeat the cycle. They don’t want to buy a house or get married or own a dog or climb a corporate ladder.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. 2,5 Kids in Germany make you poor. Better not the american way 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  3. braddahr says:

    It’s always seemed to me that the American Dream has really been a conspicuous consumption fantasy.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Great post! This is a touchy subject. I have an Associate Degree in Laboratory Science, and I was finding that there were many jobs out there that were paying people almost as much as I was making and they didn’t require any education. I had worked hard for my degree and was halfway though getting my bachelor degree (I could not finish because of the high education cost) and it was disheartening to hear that there are jobs out there that don’t require any education that were paying people close to what I was making, sometimes more. What was even more outrageous was knowing that people working fast food and retail jobs were demanding their pay to be matched to what I was making as a Lab Tech, and those jobs don’t even require a high school degree! It becomes difficult sometimes to keep the American Dream alive when so many places are telling these young people that they don’t need an education to work, and the places that do require education are not paying their employees enough to sustain them and keep them happy.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. jrusoloward says:

    The American Dream is all about living a comfortable middle class life. In that respect, the American Dream is disappearing with the middle class. I think millennials have different expectations and different work ethics that don’t necessarily lead to the American Dream; I’m not sure what this will mean for the future.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thoughtful article. I agree with the commenter above. I don’t know many millenials who want the traditional “American Dream”. Most of those I know want to travel, want several different careers, aren’t too interested in marriage, home or car ownership….most have a refreshing world view and are doing things wayyy differently than their parents. This generation is a total disruptor.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Fortunately, this is not my dream. I don’t think it’s the dream of most modern Americans anymore either.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Ngumabi says:

    The American dream attracted people from all over the world and with time the “fishermen” became more than the “fish”
    It’s normal that over time it gets even harder to live the dream
    People need to work extra hard to make it now because it has become very competitive
    In general, that’s the direction the world is heading to today
    Nice article

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Interesting take on the challenges the millennial generation faces in pursuing the American dream. Different values and/or value system = different life outcomes.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Adeola says:

    As an European who doesn’t liv in America, I don’t know if I should be commenting on the “American dream.

    Using global history as a source though, I would say there was never an American dream but in reality there is and was an American nightmare or genocide as some would call it.

    American was built on capitalist values and that has never changed but evolve with time.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. gina says:

    As others have stated, I think the dream has changed. If I didn’t have kids, I wouldn’t have a car and I’d probably be renting a condo/loft.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Carissa (The Green Eyed Lady) says:

    This is a tough call to make considering the world we live in now. I think it’s attainable but it takes more to get there…honestly, this is something that I would have to sit and think about.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Jo says:

    The people achieving the “American Dream” is usually the middle class, but it looks like the middle class is disappearing. It’s really sad. As a millennial, I think it’s still achievable, it’s just harder than it used to be.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I don’t think the American dream is the same dream it used to be. I personally do want a house, but I know many of my friends do not. With the housing market sky high, the value of the dollar so low and now learning from you that wages have decreased since I was in school I think it’s just about impossible to achieve the “American dream” the way it once was. Maybe millennials are being realistic by giving it up.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Olivia says:

    I’m not a millennial and I’ve struggled with my BA degrees in Spanish and Radio,TV,Film. Yes I’ve taught. That certainly isn’t the industy for me. I think the American Dream is mostly unachievabke for average Americans. Our society is structured to keep people living paycheck to paycheck. Only those with determination and true grit, willing to withstand horrible lives for a brief moment can achieve it. I just think all generations are out here struggling hard.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Brown Sugar says:

    I recorded a podcast on how I think the “American Dream” is a lie. It is a template for how to live your life but it leaves very little to be creative. I think we all should ditch the American Dream and tap into our own dream.

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Katherine G says:

    Speaking as someone who just ended in almost 10 year job search last year I think jobs are hard for everyone. I don’t think the American dream is far-fetched but I think it takes more work to get there. Millenials will have to work harder to find employment or create jobs for themselves. I’m seeing people creating their own jobs more in the past few years. I love it.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Techclectic says:

    I think the American Dream wasn’t so much about 2.5 kids, a dog, and white picket fence. I think the dream is to pioneer, grow, and create. To follow your passion and enjoy life and community is a dream that is always relevant. We have many more avenues to pursue that dream than the founding Fathers did.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. The American Dream has been a myth for many decades now. The American people have to change their goals for a future and work on changing our culture and society accordingly.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. I don’t believe the the American dream is to far fetched. It may be harder for the new generations to find good paying goods but as long as they don’t give up hope and work hard they can have the American dream.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Anonymous says:

    I think the American dream has changed for this generation. It’s not only about climbing the corporate ladder, people are making their personal dreams a reality.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. The FashionSherlock says:

    I think the American dream has changed for this generation. It’s not only about climbing the corporate ladder, people are making their personal dreams a reality.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. themomnoms says:

    I believe that the American dream is different now, especially for millennials. I think it changes for every generation, in all honesty. Because we want different things.

    Liked by 1 person

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