"I am very excited to have the civilian version of The Apprentice back on the air this fall."
Civilian? As if this year's crop of 16 contestants haven't suffered enough…
Still, credit to the out-of-touch mogul for at least knowing how to embrace the zeitgeist, as NBC announced this morning that the competitors for the 10th season of the reality show have all somehow been adversely affected by the recession. Recent college grads, the unemployed and struggling small business owners are all among the crop of board room hopefuls.
"Each of this season's 16 contestants has been hard hit by the economy and they are fighting back; fighting for a chance to rebuild their careers and for one savvy contestant, the career opportunity of a lifetime—to come and work for me," Trump said. "They have nothing to lose and everything to gain!"
Not accounting for any potential loss of dignity, that is. (If there's one thing reality show producers aren't known for, it's painting their cast in the utmost dignified and respectful light.)
The 13-week season kicks off with a two-hour premiere Sept. 16. Here's this year's competitors:
• Tyana Alvarado, 41, unemployed real estate agent; Miami
• Kelly Smith Beaty, 30, laid off from PR job; Fayetteville, Ga.
• Poppy Carlig, 24, recent Stanford grad; Richmond, Calif.
• Stephanie Castagnier, 34, former banker; Chicago
• Nicole Chiu, 27, quit law firm; Palos Verdes, Calif.
• Alex Delgado, 43, laid off as testing technician in mechanical engineering; Santa Ynez, Calif.
• Gene Folkes, 46, laid off finance job; Wylie, Texas
• Wade Hanson, 33, real estate mogul; Woodbury, Minn.
• David Johnson, 34, former account manager, Navy vet and part-time comic; Portage, Mich.
• Brandy Kuentzel, 30, cofounder of mobile cupcake business; San Francisco
• Steuart Martens, 27, business owner; Washington, D.C.
• Liza Mucheru-Wisner, 30, business owner; Corpus Christi, Texas
• Clint Robertson, 40, accountant, real estate attorney and developer; Austin
• Mahsa Saeidi-Azcuy, 29, assistant district attorney/web show host; Brooklyn
• Anand Vasudev, 31, laid off real estate investment firm; Tampa
• James Weir, 31, laid off law firm/unemployed; New York
Speaking of TV, the Emmys are coming! The Emmys are coming! Check out Kristin Dos Santos' humiliating predictions now.