This week I am blogging about students and their impact on culture. Specifically, I am covering the research we’ve uncovered about what they are thinking. In this blog, I will cover how they plan to influence the world; how they will use their voice.
Early Generation Y young adults have been “activists.” They resemble the Baby Boomers back in the 1960s, but with technology. They plan to influence the world by voicing their thoughts and passions for everyone to hear. Today, much more than their parents’ generation, they have vehicles everywhere to be heard. If they like something or don’t like something—they can start a petition on-line, blog, tweet, make a movie, post a viral Facebook announcement or a video on YouTube. They have embraced advocacy like no other generation—even the Boomers. (They may not want to make the sacrifices other generations made, but they will find a way to be heard from their bedroom or campus.
Jason Russell is a friend of mine. He was one of three Gen Y grads who traveled to Uganda and made a movie called Invisible Children, which chronicled the plight of child soldiers. Their organization helped petition the U.S. government to take a stand. In 2009, President Obama signed a law helping Uganda.
Tyler Wigg-Stevenson, a young Christian activist, started Two Futures Project, which has changed how Christians address nuclear weapons. People, old and young, have gotten on board with him. Thanks to his efforts and others, support for a nuclear-free world has never been brighter.
As a middle school student, Zach Hunter got involved in the slave-trade issue, when he discovered that slavery was still an issue even today. Zach is now a senior in high school, and his organization Loose Change to Loosen Chains has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to free slaves and grow awareness.
What’s interesting today is—young people don’t even have to leave their hometown to get involved. I believe caring adults must encourage involvement—and challenge kids to stay involved even when the novelty of their cause has worn off.
Whether you’re an employer, a parent or a teacher—this generation expects to have a voice; they want to weigh in, to tweet, to vote, to text and update their profile. Get ready. They will be heard.
Where do you see this in your world?
To get a copy of my latest book, Generation iY—Our Last Chance to Save Their Future, go to: www.SaveTheirFutureNow.com.