Essays & Confessions

What The Today Show’s Jean Chatzky Would Tell Her 20-Something Self

By | Wednesday, June 07, 2017

It’s not a secret that the years immediately post-college are some of the most confusing and daunting to face: pumped full of expectations, often burdened with substantial student loans, and seeing little more than unpaid internships ahead, post-grads today are arguably more vulnerable today than they’ve ever been. Navigating one’s twenties will always be a unique experience, with no one perfect pathway that everyone can follow — particularly not when the typical goalposts of adulthood (home ownership, marriage, children) are coming substantially later in life for this generation.

As someone who has written a lot on how I’m navigating these years in both an untraditional industry and without a college degree, I’m always fascinated by hearing how other people managed to do it. Yes, my path might be a bit more unusual than most, but with the way post-grad life is structured today, it would be almost impossible to say that there are still many big norms we’re all following.

Recently, I had the incredible opportunity to sit down with the Today Show’s money editor and host of the Her Money podcast, Jean Chatzky, to talk about just that: how did she get to the (objectively really cool) place she is in now, how did she navigate her 20s, and what would she do differently if she could? Her path was both surprisingly unorthodox for someone with such a traditionally-prestigious media career, and relatively universal in its initial uncertainty. She didn’t initially enter into a TV career, nor did she set out to be an expert on all things money. Beyond just the useful career tips, learning about Jean’s path reminded me of something important: millennials have a more uncertain 20-something life than previous generations did, but the reality of not knowing exactly what your next step is hasn’t changed, and is something we all can learn from.

Enjoy our interview with Jean below!

Image via Pexels

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