8 Of 10 College Grads Can’t Operate Leaf Blower
by Kelly McFelling, Politicoat Tuesday 4/26/2016
A recent survey conducted at a mix of private and public universities discovered that a majority of soon-to-graduate college seniors have absolutely no idea how to operate the most iconic landscaping tool after the push mower.
A Chicago-based research firm, specializing in data gathering for higher education, asked thousands of seniors from ten different universities to demonstrate the use of leaf blowers most commonly found in home lawn care.
Sample groups were given all required materials to make the leaf blowers operational: a power source, a power cord, a blower, eye and hearing protection, and a pile of leaves.
Abilities to operate the blowers were tied directly to fields of study. Business and Liberal Arts majors were the most ineffective at making a deductive connection between the power source and blowers. Engineering students were most successful at connecting and starting the leaf blowers, but dropped the devices and ran when asked to demonstrate use.
“We’re not talking about gas-powered backpack blowers with choke and throttle settings used by commercial landscapers,” said Melony Grant of Suvarta, the company that conducted the survey. “We’re talking very simple electric blowers that plug into a fucking wall and have a single fucking on/off switch.”
Anthony Jenkins, academic adviser at a university surveyed, considers the results troubling at a time when post-graduate employment is at all time lows. “After spending four to six years and eighty thousand dollars on an undergraduate degree, students should be better prepared for work in the landscaping profession,” said Jenkins. “Not knowing how to operate a basic yard tool is very disturbing.”