In my recent post about our autonomous vehicle team, I was commenting about how impressed I was with these students. The “Millennial Generation”, or those born from around 1982 to around 1998, are the primary age demographic I see in my engineering classes at the university. Here are some of the characteristics of these young people, as listed by Neil Howe and William Strauss in their book “Millennials Rising: The Next Great Generation”:
Of course, most of us older folk know that these young people run circles around us with their tech-savvy skills and their use of social networking sites and text messaging. And I’ve heard some adults of my generation wonder if online networking masks an inability to establish and grow in “real” relationships.
If that is true in general, then we must have an extraordinary cohort of students at my institution, because so many of them are thoughtful, articulate, open-minded, and hard-working. I for one have been able to expand my circle of relationships because of what I’ve learned from them.
If we in religious orders fail to recognize the opportunities for outreach that these folks are demonstrating for us, then shame on us!