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Getting by Girls

August 20, 2014

In today’s economy, average students may face growing challenges.



Quinn Dombrowski Flickr

High school graduation. (Quinn Dombrowski)

Getting by in a competitive world. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

Despite attending good schools and having supportive home environments, many students choose to coast through high school. Sociologist Michele Rossi at the University of California at Berkeley calls girls in this category “getting by girls.”

MICHELE ROSSI (University of California, Berkeley):

Their priority in life is sociability and doing enough to have enough. They’re neither the over-achievers who are stressed out about getting into elite colleges, nor are they the at-risk kids who are struggling to get anywhere.


But at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, she said that with middle class jobs going overseas or going away, doing just enough may no longer be enough.


I’m worried about them, in that the comfortable life that they think they can have by doing enough in school to go to a four-year college may not be enough to cut it in the globally competitive economy.


I’m Bob Hirshon, for AAAS, the science society.