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Friday Five: Finding Meaningful Work, Research on Fair Trade Coffee and More

On Fridays, we bring you the best of our blog and the best of the web. This week’s roundup includes posts on how to find meaningful work—even without previous experience, a video on the realities of fair trade and a lecture on economics and family from our recent summer conference. 1. The Summer of Discontent: the Millennial Generation’s Search for Meaningful Work: Over at the Institute for Faith, Work & Economics blog, Greg Ayers writes on recent news related to Millennial unemployment, and he features our recent blog by Tyler Castle.
With due respect to Shakespeare and John Steinbeck, for millennials, the “winter of our discontent” has continued into summer. At least, that’s the impression one gets after reading the latest jobs report released last Friday.
2. Home Economics: The Consequences of Changing Family Structure: At our recent Values & Capitalism summer conference, Nick Schulz, formerly with AEI, discussed themes from his recent monograph on the economic realities of America’s changing families. 3. Solving the chicken or egg problem: AEI’s Stan Veuger writes on how to get experience when every job requires experience.
You know the complaint: “I’m trying to find a job, but everywhere I look I see experience required. How am I supposed to accumulate experience if I need experience to gain experience?” I’ve heard the story twice this week alone. It is of particular importance during what is still a slow recovery, with high rates of unemployment and, especially, youth unemployment. Why does it happen? And how do you get yourself a chicken or an egg if you start out with neither?
4. Golden Voices and White Lies: At his blog, Smorgasblurb, Chris Horst writes about two men with differing stories of homelessness and what we can learn from their lives.
Ted Williams and Jeffrey Hillman dominated headlines. In fact, I’d wager they were the two biggest homelessness stories of 2011 and 2012, respectively. TV, newspapers and radio stations across the country celebrated them. But now years beyond these headlines, only one of these two men has had a happy ending.
5. “Combating Global Poverty with a Cup of Coffee“: In this Learn Liberty video, professor Colleen Haight describes her research on fair trade coffee.