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Kids, education and generational wealth

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  • #61
    Originally posted by F0017S0 View Post
    I wanted to give others a chance to respond...

    I got my current role (soon to be former role) because I made a phone call at the "right time". Had I called sometime unknown in the future (maybe a week or two later), I wouldn't have gotten that opportunity. It was pretty random that I picked up the phone and I beat out the other 40 applicants; by chance, I knew someone who helped me get to the head of the line. By chance those people said the "wrong" comments in their interviews. To use the hiring committee example, there is a chance I might not have connected well with someone, and their opinion from a 30 minute conversation torpedoes my candidacy. Totally random that I ended up with a person with whom I did not click...

    I do believe there are critical junctures in those black boxes where it is effectively a throw of the metaphorical dice; we just put lipstick on the pig to make ourselves feel better about it...
    If you were not qualified, even if all the above were true, you still wouldn’t have gotten the job. And if you weren’t skilled, even if you got the job, you wouldn’t last long.

    But yes, you were fortunate/lucky that things lined up in your favor fortune favors the prepared. But not all of the prepared are fortunate (unfortunately). I don’t doubt there were others just as prepared as you, but to say you played no part in landing this job would be cutting your hard work short.

    Thinking this way helps ground me. My successes and failures, although mine, are not completely my own. Better not to get too puffed up or too despondent. Just keep doing my best.

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    • #62
      Originally posted by bovie View Post

      You can say that about literally anything, if you're really looking to pick some nits. Kind of misses the point though, don't you think?
      Not really. There is a significant amount of luck involved in life. However, it's easy to delude oneself into dismissing it completely.


      Of every reasonable variable that goes into getting a job, chance has the smallest effect. So yes, comparatively, nothing to do with it.
      It's a bit of a leap from smallest to "comparatively, nothing to do with it". Even if we grant you smallest, a factor could easily be the smallest, but still significant.

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      • #63
        Originally posted by bovie View Post

        I have actually. Which is why I’m making this point.

        The fact that people rank candidates differently using separate criteria is not the same as the process being equivalent to chance.
        Let's say Al, Barry, and Charlie would rank candidate 1 over candidate 2. Doug, Ed, and Frank would rank candidate 2 over candidate 1.

        Right now, Al, Barry, and Charlie are on the hiring committee. You are candidate 2, you do not get the job as they offered it to candidate 1. However Doug, Ed, and Frank were scheduled to replace Al, Barry, and Charlie in 3 days. If the hiring process had been pushed back by just one week, you would have gotten the job as the new committee composition would have preferred you over the other candidate.

        Can you explain how this is not an example of chance being involved?

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        • #64
          Originally posted by AR View Post

          Not really. There is a significant amount of luck involved in life. However, it's easy to delude oneself into dismissing it completely.


          It's a bit of a leap from smallest to "comparatively, nothing to do with it". Even if we grant you smallest, a factor could easily be the smallest, but still significant.
          You sure know how to get lost in a rabbit hole, don’t you?

          To recap for you and get back on track:

          There is certainly luck in life, not dismissing that and never did.

          I did, however, say that getting into college and getting a job are not equivalent to a random chance event—which was the assertion.

          Is a statistics refresher in order?

          Speaking of statistics and chance, the odds of you, I, or anyone else even being born in the first place are statistically indistinguishable from zero—so yes, of course there is luck in life.

          That said, there is a whole laundry list of things that come before random chance—and which are exceedingly more significant—in determining whether you got that job or got into that school.

          Finally, don’t confuse preparedness with dumb luck.

          Making that phone call at the right time—luck, or initiative, motivation, and situational awareness? Saying something (or not) stupid in an interview—luck, or poorly (well) developed social skills or emotional intelligence? Knowing someone who put in a good word—luck, or skillful networking and contact utilization?

          Those who are most prepared are often called lucky by those who don’t know better. Luck certainly exists, but it’s not infrequently created, rather than just mere chance.

          Comment


          • #65
            Originally posted by bovie View Post

            You sure know how to get lost in a rabbit hole, don’t you?
            I really have no idea what you're going on about. I said that I agreed with your post except for the part where you said "Chance has nothing to do with it."

            Now it sounds like you're walking that back.

            If you're no longer insisting that "chance has nothing to do with it", then I don't know what you think we're arguing about.

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            • #66
              Boys boys boys! (yes I am assuming)

              Of course there is chance involved in everything. But getting a job or into college is not purely chance either. It is not at all like lotto where all you have to do is apply. You need minimum criteria and for some schools/jobs not very many people meet that criteria.


              This is not all or none. Where the line falls with how much chance vs skill can be debatable.

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              • #67
                A tale of two childhoods:

                My wife's family is wealthy. Mostly Wall Street and a couple of attorney's who went into finance. Her father and uncle/cousins all own multi-million dollar homes in CT and Long Island. They've been wealthy their entire lives and it never occurred to them or anyone else that they wouldn't be wealthy adults. All the best schools. High levels of achievement but all measures. All doors open at all times. They all have their significant issues having lived this type of life. My wife attended a very expensive university for art history and grad school all paid for in full by her parents. She entered the marriage 20 years ago with zero debt but has chosen to be a stay at home mom and we live in a middle-class town in MA. She is very down to earth and it's striking how out-of-touch most of the people in her family are having grown up that way.

                I grew up lower middle class and attended state schools for college and dental school. I was able to pay may way through college (SUNY system) delivering pizzas but when I got to dental school I had to borrow everything. I chose a state dental school too because it was the cheapest option. My education debt was not all that bad compared to many others and it has not represented a significant burden to pay off in my life. My wife and I have built what we have, on our own, and we are not and have never been on the parental payroll (her sisters are nearly 50 and still get money from their mother).

                We now have a 16 year old and we've discussing how much to help or not help. How much of burden should he feel as he becomes a young adult? My father-in-law has passed away and my mother-in-law is getting up there in age and we will likely inherit a significant amount of money. We live our lives like this money is not a real possibility and that includes saving for retirement and college like it won't be there. My 16 year old has a job because he wants a car and he's going to have to have skin in the game and that means working and bringing money to the table for a car. When he goes to college, his mother and I will take the majority of the burden but he is going to have some skin in the game. He also has two younger siblings and so we need to provide the same for them as well. In discussing this with my wife, who grew up very differently than I did, we both agree there is value "in the struggle" to some degree. Our plan is to not have any of our children start life in a giant hole but we also do not want to make it too easy either. IMO, there is value in building your own life and I wouldn't have wanted my life any other way.

                Buying them a house? No way. Help them with a downpayment? Maybe, depending on what they're doing. Even with our attitudes all three of my children will still likely benefit from generational wealth as they are the only grandchildren and their grandparents estate, our estate, and the estates of both of their aunts will all end up going to them. With this in mind, they can build their own lives while they're young.

                Comment


                • #68
                  Originally posted by Dusn View Post
                  The irony of using philosophy majors as an example of a low paying major is that most studies show that philosophy majors end up with a higher average salary than the majority of other majors and also one of the highest acceptance rates into medical school (over 50%, which is much higher than the bio and chemistry majors).
                  They rank #30 on this list:

                  https://www.glassdoor.com/blog/50-hi...ollege-majors/

                  To your point about medical school acceptance, perhaps that's because they didn't have to slog through the competitive grind of legit majors like engineering or other sciences and coasted along with a 3.9 GPA. Hard to compare apples to apples at the major level unless you really dig into the details.

                  Comment


                  • #69
                    Originally posted by ENT Doc View Post

                    They rank #30 on this list:

                    https://www.glassdoor.com/blog/50-hi...ollege-majors/

                    To your point about medical school acceptance, perhaps that's because they didn't have to slog through the competitive grind of legit majors like engineering or other sciences and coasted along with a 3.9 GPA. Hard to compare apples to apples at the major level unless you really dig into the details.
                    this is an interesting list. I hope it also makes people realize that what you major in doesn't predict your future career exactly. Case in point. I majored in history (#26) and then went to grad school for sociology (#47!). I now work in statistics, which is #8 on the list. That's quite a range

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                    • #70
                      Originally posted by PWMDMD View Post
                      A tale of two childhoods:

                      My wife's family is wealthy. My wife attended a very expensive university for art history and grad school all paid for in full by her parents. She entered the marriage 20 years ago with zero debt but has chosen to be a stay at home mom and we live in a middle-class town in MA. She is very down to earth and it's striking how out-of-touch most of the people in her family are having grown up that way.

                      we are not and have never been on the parental payroll (her sisters are nearly 50 and still get money from their mother).
                      And by your own account, you wife was brought up wealthy, had everything she could want in childhood, had undergrad and grad for free and yet is a down to earth person not spoiled by her upbringing. And her 2 sisters still require some hand outs.

                      I see this in many families, especially 2 doctor families with overflowing money and one kid is grounded in reality and the other turns in a wastrel, with both having the same money and opportunities.

                      Maybe there is something genetic, since the environment is the same. Blaming money as the root of all evil is a easy cop out.

                      And finally the 16 year old and his off springs are going to inherit the wealth, whatever you try and do. I think it is good to prepare them and hope they have the drive and ambition.
                      Last edited by Kamban; 12-17-2021, 04:41 PM.

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                      • #71
                        Originally posted by Kamban View Post


                        I see this in many families, especially 2 doctor families with overflowing money and one kid is grounded in reality and the other turns in a wastrel, with both being the same money and opportunities.

                        I wonder if birth order has anything to do with it?

                        Comment


                        • #72
                          Originally posted by Lordosis View Post
                          \

                          This is not all or none. Where the line falls with how much chance vs skill can be debatable.
                          I have been saying this for days. Maybe you'll have better luck getting through.

                          Originally posted by AR View Post

                          There is always at least some chance. We can argue over how little there is, but arguing that it has zero effect (i.e. "chance has nothing to do with it") is obviously wrong.

                          Comment


                          • #73
                            Originally posted by Kamban View Post


                            Blaming money as the root of all evil is a easy cop out.

                            No one is saying that. At least I don't think so. I'm definitely not.

                            It's very simple. Absurd amounts of money are a risk factor. It doesn't guarantee any outcome. You don't expect everyone with risk factors for a certain disease to get it, right? So there is no reason to expect every child of a every rich family (or even the same rich family) to turn out the same.

                            Everyone is free to do what they like with that information, including ignore it completely.

                            Comment


                            • #74
                              Being Indian myself these are my thoughts...

                              The problem with this approach is that the kids can get used to being taken care of by parents. They may not develop the necessary muscles and skills to advance in life, careers.... One thing I realized while going through the process OP described is that I became very resilient, thoughtful, have a proper process of decision making etc. I believe this can still be done without burning out.

                              I recommend the book written by "tiger mom" Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, I do not necessarily agree with her style of parenting but it talks about how the first two-generation (immigrant and 1st) "make it" in US and later generations do not...

                              regarding medicine, I am coming to the conclusion that you can be either a good doctor or a rich doctor. The role of a physician in medicine is changing very fast these days and I feel that this field may not be as lucrative as it used to be (if you want to practice is the right way).

                              Comment


                              • #75
                                Originally posted by jm129 View Post
                                I am coming to the conclusion that you can be either a good doctor or a rich doctor.
                                Well, you could also be neither. Poor (or at least not rich) and bad is also possible.

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