The boy who knew too much: a child prodigy

This is the true story of scientific child prodigy, and former baby genius, Ainan Celeste Cawley, written by his father. It is the true story, too, of his gifted brothers and of all the Cawley family. I write also of child prodigy and genius in general: what it is, and how it is so often neglected in the modern world. As a society, we so often fail those we should most hope to see succeed: our gifted children and the gifted adults they become. Site Copyright: Valentine Cawley, 2006 +

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Gifted discrimination in the workplace.

How are gifted people treated in the workplace? In particular, how are former child prodigies welcomed, or not?

Recently, I heard of an interesting experience of a former child prodigy, in the corporate work place. He had attended a world famous University at 13 and graduated in Physics at 16. All his life he had excelled in all things academic. He had started work in the corporate world at 16. I was struck though, by how he was treated. Do you think he was welcomed or appreciated by his corporate bosses? Did they value him?

Well, to my eyes, they discriminated against him in a very odd way. Knowing of his intellectual brilliance, he had been specifically told that he would NEVER get promoted, unless he received an A grade evaluation in all areas, in his work performance. He was rather puzzled by this, you see, because he knew of others, whose evaluations were two levels below his, who were getting promoted. These were "ordinary" people, who had not been child prodigies, or gifted in any way. They received promotion on reaching a much lower standard than he did.

Understandably, this former child prodigy was unhappy at being held to a different standard than everyone else in the he duly left his job. He felt that it was wrong that they should treat him differently, in this negative way, because of his academic history. The imposition of a higher standard, for him and him alone, meant that he could not enjoy the job. He was always under pressure to do better, be the best. It meant that he could never relax in the job, never give up pushing himself. It made the job, in short, hellish to be in. He had to leave.

I am curious. Do you, my reader, know of any other cases of gifted discrimination? Are they similar to this one, with gifted people being held to higher standards, before they can be promoted? Or are they experiencing other forms of discrimination? Please let me know in the comments below.

Posted by Valentine Cawley

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 3:18 PM 


Blogger Amiene Rev said...

This kind of discriminate remind me when I was very young. Like your son, I am a gifted. Reading your story about your son, remind me about the young me, myself.

9:22 PM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

I am glad my words call to my mind your childhood. If my words prompt people to reflect on life, I am happy.

Take care.

2:41 PM  

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