you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn
I am part of a listserv that often time posts jobs. Today, a job was posted that stated the following: “This position offers a young professional the opportunity to work for a growing firm.” Alright, I thought nothing of it. Later, I see an email that turns into a mass chain email exchange about the words “young professional”. As a young professional, I never thought of these words as discrimination or derogatory. Personally, I use the fact that I am a young professional to my advantage. This allows me to share a fresh perspective and innovative ideas.
Most organizations and universities have a disclaimer that reads: The XXXXX is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, or veteran status in the provision of its educational programs and services or employment opportunities and benefits.
Now I understand that It is against the law to discriminate against any job candidate based on age. Now, I learned from the email exchange this discrimination of age (and I am assuming: ace, sex, color, religion, national origin, disability, or veteran status) not only applies to the hiring practices as well as job announcements. This person went on to say: When I see ‘young professional’ I understand it to mean ‘someone we can pay less.’ I don’t believe that to be the case at all.
Allow me to argue that the phrase “young professional” is used all the time. This is a phrase I am proud of because I am a young professional. Essentially, saying young professional is stating the job is an entry level or just reaching a mid-level position; however, it doesn’t reflect any type of age discrimination or bias. Generally, it is used because this type of position is meant for someone new to that particular sector and offers them a chance to learn, grow, and move up into roles with higher responsibility.
I am proud to be a young professional. The words young professional defines me just like the word veteran or seasoned defines someone who has been in the work-force or a profession longer. These defining phrases don’t need to define us. These phrases allow for the best person to enter a position.
I am interested in knowing your thoughts. Young professionals weigh in on this subject, do you think this is considered discrimination?