Jeff Tanner’s parents brought it up every day. His grandparents asked about it every time they spoke on the phone. Finally, Jeff’s parents’ friends started to ask about it.
It happens to every recent grad, and will happen to every graduating senior: chronic questioning. “What are you doing after college?” “Why haven’t you started applying yet?” and “Why the hell did you major in English?!”
After several weeks of the fifth degree, Jeff Tanner did the unthinkable: he decided to completely lie about his career plans.
“I was at Thanksgiving dinner with my parents, relatives and some friends and had to keep explaining that I didn’t have a job lined up yet,” says Tanner. “After the 19th person told me to “hang in there,’ I figured it would be a hell of a lot easier to just pretend I already had a job.”
Tanner, who had spent a good portion of his time at SUNY Oswego “dicking around on PhotoShop,” decided to fabricate some documents from Goldman Sachs, emails indicating that he had been hired, paychecks for large sums of money, and inter-office interactions including assignments, inside jokes, and emails making fun of the boss’s annoying habits.
Extravagant? Yes. Over-the-top? Yes. Necessary? Hell yes. Anyone who has ever been interrogated about his/her unemployment knows the agony of having to reply, “I’m still looking,” ad nauseam. Tanner’s actions have inspired many other unemployed recent grads to follow in his footsteps.
“I was just about to drink myself to sleep for yet another night when I heard about what Jeff did,” says Florida State University grad Jessica Quentin. “Instead of killing a bottle of Bacardi, I PhotoShopped some emails from advertising agencies asking me to come in for interviews.”
Added Quentin, “When I finished, I still killed the bottle of Bacardi. I’m still technically unemployed, so I didn’t really have much else to do.”
Despite the fact that these graduates have a new sense of purpose, companies are not thrilled about people lying about their employment status on resumes. Several of these companies have considered filing charges against Tanner et al.
“Let them,” said Tanner. “To be honest, I’d rather go to jail for a while than have to be asked one more time why I couldn’t be a doctor like my older sister.”