“Millennials,” “Generation Y,” “The Peter Pan Generation” — they go by many names and were born roughly between 1980 and 2000. They are the generation that grew up with smartphones, rear-facing cameras, internet etc. They were at a tender and vulnerable age when Harry Potter first took his flying lessons on his magical broom, when they witnessed the great fall of the Twin Towers of World Trade Centre in New York City on 9/11. The millennials grew up in the era of cell phones, digital cameras, email, text-messaging, mp3 players, handheld video game devices, WhatsApp, Facebook/Instagram, YouTube Videos, web browsing and what not.
One such millennial who knocked my socks off was this young girl named Anushka, a teenager in her early twenties. Her white t-shirt with “MILLENNIAL” in big, black, bold letters just caught our quick attention and we could not stop thinking about her Unique Talent Presentation, here at Nirmiti Academy. The DIY (Do It Yourself) Craft was her unique talent. She represented a young face of the millennials. Moreover, it was her presentation that spoke more of her as a millennial. She was a true go-getter when it came to present her unique talent in a unique way. We could see her beaming with pride and happiness to showcase her unique talent to others. She was so excited that she was talking a mile a minute. She had so much to say about it and she could go on and on and keep us glued to her presentation. The millennials like Anushka and many others are motivated to work on things which interest them. At the same time, I could also see her being unable to smile and present herself happily. Gone are the moments for the millennials where they feel present and enjoy their surroundings. They are the generation who feel the constant need for virtual attention which leads them to overshare their lives and moments on social media or go inward in deep conscience to find themselves. This leaves them unconnected with the physical world around them.
Millennials are a highly praised and confident generation. They are a highly optimistic generation. They have a greater need to have life experiences rather than to accumulate material wealth, even though they do like to acquire things that will help them to enjoy those experiences. Millennials are the most educated generation. Because the price tag of education is now so high and continuing to climb each year, Millennials have become very savvy about their educational choices. Unlike previous generations who saw education as a ritual and an investment in their future, millennials view education as an expense, unless it is going to empower them in order to be a better individual. They expect education to help them prepare for the new opportunities and challenges of this age, rather than helping them by providing fact-based information/knowledge. The millennials want to be challenged by thinking about the future and how they can contribute to building a better society and environment. They don’t feel the need to become “textbook smart / book worms”. They know that facts can be easily found online through their own independent action. They are the generation that boasts and thrive on knowledge at finger “click”. In a world of open access to knowledge, it makes little sense to rely on the classroom as a forum for the transfer of knowledge.
Instead, the students much prefer to learn from the stories and experiences of others. These shared stories and experiences help them to augment their own experience by learning from the success and mistakes of others. This helps them avoid making the same mistakes as their influencers. Hence, they like to invest more of their time and money on such programs which help them to develop various techniques that they could incorporate into their thoughts and decision-making process, thereby building a new skill set.
We cannot ignore the fact that millennials are also a generation of uncertainties and fluctuations. They are the generation who likes to keep switching their gadgets. They grew up with technology where everything was at their fingertips. It becomes frustrating for them to not get what they want when they want it. Most of the things have been handed to them on a silver spoon. This makes them feel entitled to get what they want without putting in much effort.
Though they are the major workforce of the companies today, they do not believe in lifelong employment. Lifelong commitment is a fairy tale for the millennials. They always jump from on job to another because they are always in search of something new and better. These high expectations become their downfall and makes them less financially stable than their parents.
Millennials are here to stay! They are young, bright and energetic and they ARE the FUTURE. They are great assets which the world must harness and use. They are the generation that is revolutionizing the world. They are the budding leaders of tomorrow. They adopt technology and stimulus in the same breadth. This generation is also a collaborative and social generation that has a focus on understanding and building their knowledge through various forms of medium to discover the answers. It is for the educator like us to provide an arena for engagement and discovery as well as be a content expert and mentor. It is for learning platform providers like Nirmiti Academy to give an explorative and experiential experience and bring out their true potential in life and at work. It is this transformational journey that we at Nirmiti Academy look forward to every day to learn, unlearn and relearn with these youthful and magical generation – the Millennials!
Also read: “Managing Time Is Managing You”
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