BY: JESSICA BEUKER
I can vividly remember my first week of university residence. Well, the parts that weren’t seeped in vodka and jagger bombs anyway. Our floor had one laundry machine, which was operated by our student cards. One evening I came out of my room to find a group of people, spilling out of the laundry room doorway. I made my way to front of the line. Two of the girls were standing at the washer frantically pushing buttons and looking for a place to put the laundry soap. “What’s going on?” I asked, slightly scared to hear the answer. “Do you know how to work this thing?” one of the girls replied. I did, and so I spent the next half hour giving a laundry lesson to everyone on my floor. Thank goodness for my mother, who taught me how to do my own laundry before the age of 12.
The point of this story is that not everyone is equipped with this kind of knowledge. We go from being carefree kids in elementary school, to angsty teens in high school, to, wait for it, adults. The transition feels like it happens over night; one day you’re eating grilled cheese in the cafeteria and the next you’re doing your taxes, paying rent and, yes, doing your own laundry. Isn’t there anything that could prepare us for this departure into adulthood? Enter the Adulting School.
The Adulting School, which will launch online on January 15, is an online community of students and teachers who offer classes that focus on grown-up things such as health and wellness, relationships and community, make-it and fix-it skills, and financial basics.
Since it started making its rounds on the internet, the Adulting School has gathered plenty of praise and critique. While some feel it is a useful tool to help young people develop skills, that they might not otherwise have had the opportunity to learn from their parents, others are not so impressed with the idea.
“There are innumerable millennials who have learned to be responsible for their time and money completely separately of their families or educations. They learned to do those things in spite of it,” states an article published by Cosmopolitan. “Being a person who (1) uses basic skills needed for survival and (2) does what’s required to be a functioning member of society can be exhausting, but, again, it’s also not being an adult. It’s just being.”
An article by Uproxx argues that the school doesn’t do any good for millennials’ already tainted image. “The school’s premise, which centres around paying money instead of “calling older people who like you,” doesn’t really hold much water. Nor does it do anything to dispel the widespread notion that millennials are worthless and whiny and altogether too coddled to be of any use to our society.” Others argue that you don’t need a school to learn these things when the world has Google at its fingertips, and some people are just plain disgusted by the fact that people are still using the word “adulting.”
Whether you’re for it or against it, The Adulting School is opening soon, and the creators are standing by it. “You’re smart and capable,” writes the website. “Your education just didn’t provide you with all the skills you need.” Besides learning how to balance a chequebook, perhaps you’ll finally figure out how to fold a fitted sheet.