Phi Beta Cons

The ‘Write’ Stuff

I applaud my university’s monthly magazine for stressing how employers are dissatisfied with graduates’ writing skills (see page 18). Yet, while I have no interest in biting the hand that feeds me, I do have to call attention to a few quotes from the article that are quite disconcerting. 

While commenting on employers’ expectations, one professional stressed the need for students who can “construct a coherent email to the rest of the company.” Another requested that graduates should “be able to write what you mean, and in a format that is understandable and grammatically correct.” Hence, after 16-plus years of schooling, students not only cannot write at the college level — a fair portion of graduates also cannot write coherently. That is scary. 

Still, every time I hear employers slamming graduates’ writing, my instinct is to ask, “Why did you hire them?”


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