"Two Ben" Life

  China News Weekly reporter / Kui Yanzhang

  Published in the 966th issue of China News Weekly on September 28, 2020

  The Longdong area of ​​Guangzhou is surrounded by mountains and dense vegetation. There are many colleges and universities here, most of which are second and third colleges. Due to the large number of young people, many businesses have been born. Various small restaurants, supermarkets, and student apartments are all around. Energetic, but also simple.

You can still see many handshake buildings here. Standing between the buildings, you will see the sky divided into a tortuous line.

  On September 13, several universities here have basically opened, but due to the epidemic, most campuses are closed for management.

Huang Deng has been teaching at a financial college here from July 2005 to the end of 2019. Recently, she published a non-fictional book called "My Second Student", which tells her about her The situation and destiny of the Erben students I met.

In the book, she aliased the school to F Academy.

  "Secondary" is a vague definition, usually referring to the school that admits students in the second batch of undergraduates in the college admissions examination.

Generally speaking, the first university is mostly a university directly under the ministry or "211 Project" university, while the second university is mostly a provincial university and a non-"211 project" university. There is a certain gap between the teaching staff and hardware of the first university.

  According to data disclosed by the Guangdong Education Examination Institute, in 2017, the number of people admitted to one book was 84,000, with an acceptance rate of 11%, and the number of people admitted to two books was 207,000, with an acceptance rate of 27%.

In other words, among the students who enter the university every year, one student is only a minority, and the second student is a larger group.

However, in the field of public opinion, compared with topics related to "211" and "985" that can always arouse widespread discussion, the Erben students generally appear silent.

  Before writing "My Second Student", Huang Deng had entered the public eye for his writing "A Rural Scene in the Eyes of a Rural Daughter-in-law".

She is willing to observe the people who are directly related to her to witness the broader changes of the times.

This year, she was transferred to a vocational college in Shenzhen. Before that, she taught at Guangdong F College for more than 14 years.

  In 14 years, she has taught more than 4,500 students.

These students spanned the post-80s and post-90s generations, and nearly half of them came from the economically backward regions such as northern Guangdong and western Guangdong.

In Huang Deng’s eyes, “Most of them come from unknown villages and unremarkable towns, and come from ordinary people. After entering the university, they did not have much ambition, nor did they classify themselves as elites. Their thoughts are nothing more than finding an ordinary job. After graduation, most of them stayed in some units in the country and at the grassroots level and engaged in ordinary work." Huang Deng summarized his observations like this.

  What's interesting is that when Huang Deng himself was in college, he was admitted to a junior college at first, and later that school was promoted to a second degree.

And her self-evaluation and social expectations back then are almost incomparable with those of the second undergraduate students today.

She was able to witness the real changes of the largest and most silent group of Chinese college students under the rapid changes in China in twenty years.

"When can I earn money"

  Huang Deng became the head teacher of the post-90s students in 2016.

When she met these students for the first time, she could feel the deep generational differences. "What exists between teachers and students is not a'generation gap', but the'yuan' is the'sea'".

she says.

These students are all natives of the Internet.

  Before that, she taught students born in the 80s. At that time, she could confidently talk to her classmates and discuss the meaning of life, the value of going to university, and the expectations of her parents.

Those students will also follow the instruction and change their learning attitude.

However, when Huang Lan faced the 2015 students, most of them got a face with indifferent expressions.

  After getting acquainted with the post-90s students, Huang Deng found that the post-90s students are more confused about the future than the post-80s students.

Every graduation season, many students will ask her about the details of the postgraduate entrance examination, the chances of winning the civil service examination and entrepreneurship.

At the end of the talk, I often come back to a question: In this case, what is the point of going to university?

  In addition, post-90s students are also more sensitive to housing prices.

At that time, housing prices in Guangzhou had gone through several rounds of skyrocketing, and were already far higher than the prices of graduates born in the 1980s.

In the class of 2015 she taught, none of the children from other places dared to say frankly that they would stay in the big city, and no classmate believed that they could buy a house in the big city with their own ability and salary.

This is completely different from the one-third of the post-80s class she taught in Guangzhou and Shenzhen.

  Accompanied by this is the successive popularity of "Diaosi Culture" and "Funeral Culture".

In 2011, "Diaosi" appeared on the Internet as a buzzword.

Five years after the emergence of "Diaosi Culture", the "Mourning Culture" based on the "Ge Youtan" emoji and a large number of lines from the Japanese drama "Escape Although Shameful But Useful" became popular on the Internet.

The two reflect the similar subconsciousness of the times: with the consolidation of the class and the shrinking of the expression space, there is not much possibility of success in struggle and resistance. If you want to live a good life, you can only use ridicule and self-dwarfing to relieve your sorrow.

  Some people choose to start a business.

Yao Dashun is a student of Class F in 2010.

In 2014, when he graduated, it was the Internet entrepreneurship wave. Both policies and capital encouraged college students to start their own businesses.

But combing through the entrepreneurial stars of those college students, you will find that most of these people come from prestigious universities, such as "Pao No" Ma Jiajia studying at Communication University of China, "Are you hungry" Zhang Xuhao studying at Shanghai Jiaotong University, and "Ofo Bike" Dai Weize Studying at Peking University.

  Compared with these entrepreneurs who bring their own aura of prestigious schools, Yao Dashun appears to be unknown.

After graduating, he first participated in the founding of a company engaged in bicycle riding business, and finally chose to withdraw due to conflicts with the capital.

Later, I made a campus version of the errand app with my younger brother, and finally left due to profit difficulties.

These two ventures did not bring him much financial return.

  Today, Yao Dashun has returned to his hometown and is running an education and training institution. This is his third business venture.

Sometimes, he would communicate with the younger brothers and sisters of F college, and found that in recent years, the graduates and entrepreneurs of this second school have decreased a lot.

This is related to the end of the last wave of mobile Internet entrepreneurship, and it is also related to recognizing the reality in which you live.

  According to the "Report on Employment of Undergraduates in China in 2020" issued by the independent third-party organization Max Research Institute, the proportion of undergraduates in the 2015~2019 class of undergraduates is about 1% each year, and about 55% of them will give up starting a business after three years. .

Among the undergraduates who started their own businesses, the average income after six months of graduation was 817 yuan higher than the average level of undergraduate graduates.

Five years after graduation, the average salary of entrepreneurs has further expanded, which is higher than the average salary of undergraduates by RMB 6,487.

  Another way to break through is the postgraduate entrance examination.

Unlike the post-80s generation of F College who rarely took the postgraduate entrance examination, more and more post-90s graduates choose the postgraduate entrance examination.

According to data from the National Bureau of Statistics, from 2004 to 2018, the number of graduate students enrolled has increased year by year, from 270,000 in 2004 to 760,000 in 2019, an increase of nearly three times.

  Yan Fangkun is a 2014 undergraduate of F College and is currently studying at Liaoning University.

Before graduating, she tried to find a job, but found that with her academic background, most of the small companies she could find were small companies, and the students around her were not satisfied with the jobs found.

Later, she took the postgraduate entrance examination twice and was admitted to Liaoning University.

  Nowadays, Yan Fangkun is chatting with his classmates at the university. Everyone feels very emotional. They feel that although the university has followed the trend and took a variety of certifications, they have not really thought about their career plans. Now everyone is still confused about their lives.

"I decided to become a teacher in the future. My goal is still clearer and I feel more at ease, but I may be more confused after work. When will I make money?" Yan Fangkun told China News Weekly.

  For the second undergraduates, it is not easy to enter a prestigious school for postgraduate entrance examination.

One of the reasons is that among the graduate students admitted by major universities every year, the exemption students account for a large part. For example, the exemption rate of Peking University in 2019 is 53.4%.

There are not many opportunities for non-prestigious students.

In addition, in the transfer link, some prestigious universities accept the transfer of majors, and will put forward the level requirements for candidates for undergraduate colleges. This is another threshold between the two students and the prestigious universities. For example, in 2018, Shanxi University had 109 Major acceptance adjustments, of which 34 have requirements for undergraduate colleges and universities, accounting for 31.19%.

  Postgraduate studies are really helpful for increasing income after graduation.

According to a report issued by the Max Research Institute, a comparative analysis of the 2014 undergraduates who are in graduate school and those who are not graduates found that after five years of undergraduate graduation, the average monthly income of the graduates is 725 yuan higher than that of the ungraduates.

For those students who have studied "double first-class" university graduate students, the average monthly income is 1144 yuan higher than that of the non-graduate students.

  According to the report of the Max Research Institute, in the past five years, the employment rate of both "double first-class" and "local undergraduate colleges" has shown a downward trend year by year.

In addition, taking the 2016 graduates as an example, the average monthly income of local undergraduate colleges and universities half a year after graduation is 4,211 yuan, and the average monthly income of "double first-class" colleges and universities is 5201 yuan after half a year.

Three years after graduation, the average monthly income of local undergraduate colleges and universities is 7,562 yuan, and the average monthly income of double-class universities is 9,477 yuan.

From the elite to the masses

  Huang Deng was born in 1974. “We have no experience of hungry food, the whole society is developing steadily, the education is relatively complete, the diploma is cost-effective, very valuable, and the job catches up with the economic take-off.” She summarized China News Weekly.

Whether it is self-expectation or social judgment, there is a huge difference between college students in Huang Deng's years and college students today.

  In 1992, when Deng Xiaoping delivered his southern tour speech, Huang Deng went to study at Yueyang University.

Yueyang University was merged with other schools many years ago, and it was logically upgraded to a two-college college. When the yellow lantern was studying, this university was still a junior college.

Even in colleges and universities, the yellow lanterns were still very proud of walking on the streets of Yueyang at that time, "Others asked you what did you do? I said I studied at Yue University, and ordinary people would take you very seriously, because college students Too rare."

  At that time, universities were an era of elite education.

According to data from the National Bureau of Statistics, in 1992, there were only 3.03 million candidates for the national college entrance examination, including 750,000 in technical secondary schools, with an acceptance rate of 25%.

In 2018, the number of candidates for the national college entrance examination was 9.75 million, including 7.91 million in technical secondary schools, with an acceptance rate of 81%.

In other words, the number of people admitted to universities and technical secondary schools each year was less than one-tenth of what they are today.

  Huang Deng passed the secretarial major of Yueyang University.

She originally wanted to repeat her studies for another year, striving to be admitted to the desired Wuhan University.

The dean of the high school came to the home to persuade, saying that there was a girl who had not been admitted to college after repeating school, and she was crazy. She advised Huang Lan not to repeat the school and went straight to college.

The yellow light followed the advice.

At that time, a university diploma had the ability to change destiny, but he chose to repeat the exam when he was admitted. The risks and pressures were far greater than now.

  In the future, Huang Deng will become a university teacher. She often feels that today's students are too hard. She has to plan for employment as soon as she enters the university, and test all kinds of documents she "has never heard of".

As for her university life, “don’t worry about finding a job or the distribution of graduation packages. Don’t worry about living expenses. The country has a monthly living allowance of tens of yuan. You don’t have to work hard to compete for rankings and scholarships, and you don’t need to get second for graduation resumes. Educational qualifications, countless certificates for examination."

  Of course, even in those days, Huang Deng could feel the gap between his regular colleges and universities and prestigious schools.

One of Huang Deng’s best friends was studying at Peking University. She often talked about life in Peking University to Huang Deng. “She said that there was a male classmate in the class, and the Commercial Press had a set of theory books, which she finished in high school. To be honest, that set. I didn't finish my PhD." Compared with Yueyang University, Peking University has more academic activities, and my girlfriends can easily meet celebrities like Jin Yong who "did not even think about it at the time".

  After graduating from Yellow Lantern, he went to work in a textile printing and dyeing factory in Hunan. The first month's salary was 208 yuan.

The factory has a free staff hospital.

Workers’ children go to a factory to run a kindergarten for only a few yuan a month.

If the employee gets married, the unit will divide the house.

  In 2005, the 10th Anniversary Party of Yellow Lantern's university students was attended by 36 people.

Among them, 29 were employed in party and government agencies and institutions, 6 in state-owned enterprises, and 1 in foreign-funded enterprises.

Among them, 80% of the students have been working in the same unit or the same system after graduation. Many of the students are already the backbone of the unit. Regardless of their social status or economic status, they are of the superior level in the local area.

Some of the 20% who left the iron rice bowl went to coastal cities to develop. One of the classmates taught themselves computers and now works as an executive in an elevator company in Zhongshan.

  In 1995, the year of the Yellow Lantern graduation, the "Project 211" Overall Construction Plan was released, and the "Project 211" was officially launched. Universities with the status of "211" will receive financial and talent support.

Four years later, with the introduction of the "Action Plan for the Promotion of Education in the 21st Century", the "985 Project" was also implemented.

Since then, the gap between universities has become more obvious.

At that time, most people did not realize that many years later, college students will face a completely different fate depending on whether it is a "985" or "211" university.

  At the same time, with the introduction of the Action Plan for the 21st Century, the university has expanded its enrollment for three consecutive years.

In 1999, 300,000 people were recruited from the original 1.3 million people.

In 2000, 2.206 million students were enrolled.

In 2001, more than 2.5 million students were enrolled.

After three consecutive years of enrollment expansion, the Ministry of Education relaxed the registration requirements for the college entrance examination in 2001 and removed the original restrictions on the age and marital status of candidates.

  In the 1970s, American scholar Martin Trow inspected the development of higher education in the United States and Western European countries after the war. He believed that when the gross enrollment rate of higher education reached 15%, higher education entered the popular stage from the elite stage.

In 2002, the gross enrollment rate of higher education in China reached 15%.

"Half satisfied with the status quo, half dissatisfied"

  In 1999, Huang Deng was admitted to the once dreamed Wuhan University for a Master of Arts, and then went to Sun Yat-Sen University for a Ph.D.

In 2005, she graduated with a PhD and stayed in Guangdong to teach.

  Prior to this, Huang Deng's impression of Guangdong remained "open" and "developed". I imagined that most of the students of F College should have a good family background.

Until she corrected an essay titled "Wind", a female student who did not successfully apply for a student loan confided to Huang Deng about her family's poverty and her own experience of working to earn tuition.

Huang Deng was deeply shocked, and initiated fundraising through the school mailbox, which also found opportunities for female students to work-study.

  The experience of this correction composition became a turning point in the career of a yellow lantern teacher, and she began to consciously communicate with students more.

In 2006, Huang Deng served as a class teacher in a class of the Finance and Media Department of F College. She began to sort out the family background of the students.

These students come from Guangzhou, Shenzhen and other big cities, only 6 people, and most of the others are from Shaoguan, Huazhou, Xinxing and other non-Pearl River Delta regions.

  The yellow-lighted class elects a class leader every year.

Wang Guowei was one of them and now works as a prison guard in a prison in his hometown of Sihui.

  Whether in college or after work, Wang Guowei has personal experience of the differences between the two undergraduate students and the "985" and "211" students.

During college, he worked in the school's youth volunteer association.

He remembered that in the year of the Beijing Olympics, Guangzhou local recruited volunteers for the torch relay. Students from Sun Yat-sen University and Jinan University had opportunities, but students from F College were not included.

  After graduation, he went back to his hometown and went to work in a credit cooperative in Sihui after a difficult job selection.

F college is a school focusing on finance. After students graduate, banking is the mainstream destination.

However, Wang Guowei said that the units that graduated from F college can go to are mainly credit unions. If you want to go to the four major banks, it is difficult to compete with the 211 and 985 students.

Even if I went to the four major industries, I was still engaged in relatively low-level jobs.

  In corporate recruitment, it is not uncommon for "non-211, 985" to not recruit.

In 2012, the news that "the president of Shenzhen University protested that the bank only recruited 211 university students and withdrew school deposits" caused heated discussions in the community. As a result, the bank involved revised the recruitment requirements.

In addition, the government has also issued policies to deal with this phenomenon.

In 2013, the General Office of the Ministry of Education issued a document "Notice on Strengthening Employment Information Services for College Graduates", stating that all employment recruitment activities for college graduates organized by educational administrative departments and colleges and universities are strictly prohibited from publishing restrictions on 985 colleges and 211 colleges, etc. Recruitment information in the words.

  Wang Guowei took the civil service examination after working for the credit union in Sihui for a year.

One of the reasons why he made this choice is that, compared with many recruitments, the civil service examination is almost the only place where there is no academic discrimination, and it is fairer to non-985 and 211 students.

  This year, Wang Guowei has been graduating for 10 years. He originally planned to invite his classmates to go back to school. However, due to the closure of the campus during the epidemic, the trip has not yet been possible.

Looking back at the fate of my classmates in the past 10 years, "If I do a statistics, whether my classmates are satisfied with their life after graduation, I estimate it is'half and half', half and half are satisfied, and half are dissatisfied." Wang Guowei was right. "China News Weekly" said.

  Now, Huang Deng has also left the school where she has been working for 14 years and went to a vocational college in Shenzhen, where she hopes to have more understanding and perception of young people through her interactions with children from vocational colleges.

  (Interns Zhu Enmin and Xu Ying also contributed to this article. To protect the privacy of the interviewees, Yao Dashun, Wang Guowei, and Yan Fangkun are pseudonyms in the article.)

  China News Weekly, Issue 35, 2020

  Statement: The publication of "China News Weekly" manuscript is authorized in writing