Oct. 11, 2010
Mobility of Social Class
“I love Serena so much! I hope I can have a exciting and amazing life as same as hers. If I'm her, I could be the luckiest girl if I was her. “My friend said this to me. Serena is the iconic character in the hottest teen drama, called "Gossip Girl". She belongs to the upper class and lives in the Upper East Side which is the most affluent area of New York City. We know social classes divide into upper class, middle class and lower class in America. Most of people want to live in the quality life where they do not have to worry about daily expenses anymore. The drama led many people dream to become a member of the upper class like Serena. But the question is, can people move freely in between the society classes? In the reality, the upward mobility in the social classes is small. It is significantly hard for the lower class to move up to the higher class, because of their personal situations and cultures limited their opportunities. First of all, it is hard for people that are born and raised in poverty to get good education and to make the upper class man accomplishment. Also, because of language barriers and they have to start from zero, most immigrants live in the lower class and have difficulties to ascend to the higher class.
The personal background limited people’s education and it creates obstacles for the lower class to ascend to higher class. Most people from upper class and middle class have their bachelor, master or PhD degrees. Education is the key determination of the career opportunities and income. People are struggled to obtain their college-degree because they think that is the basic identity to squeeze into middle, upper-class. Some experts said if everyone can go to college, make the effort graduate and earn a degree, there will be no poverty. It might be true, but in reality, most of people in poverty have a difficult time to become educated. Poor environment of the lower class caused their children to drop-out from the schools. And the education system of American restricts low-performance schools to obtain government funding, which most of those schools are in the slum. The lower class teenagers work hard while they are still in high school to and they have to help their families with financial problems. Therefore they don't have much time to do the homework and study for their tests, which unable numerous the lower class teens from getting high school diploma. Without the diploma, they cannot apply for the financial aid, and their poor families cannot afford the college tuition. All they can do is to find minimum wage jobs because of their education; they end up struggling to pay the rent, gas, food and etc. with their little salary. It's impossible to save any money to their children and send them to get better education. There are vicious cycles that consciously drag generations of people into the poverty hell.
Furthermore, some the lower class families have old-fashioned views about education. They think getting a practical job is more important than getting high education degree. They don't support the idea about their children waste time and money to get high education or develop on an unpractical major. I have a friend, Sherry, who was really enjoy the college life and she wanted to be a designer. But her parents found a good-paying job in the post office for her. Even though she can get financial aid to pay off her tuitions to use her extraordinary art talent, her parents still forced her to get a job instead of going to school. Both of her parents are workers in same factory and they haven’t gone to the college. In their minds the purpose of education is for finding a good job, and it will be unnecessary to go to school if they can find a job. Needless to say, the art design which has less job opportunities and make good money, from their points of view, schooling is just a stepping stone to careers. In addition, the lower class...