I don’t know why (perhaps I’m channeling Alcarwen and Nicole!), but I paused last night to think about the character of this month’s college freshmen. The details rather astonished me.
This year’s US college freshmen were mostly born in 1991. This means that:
- They don’t remember Pres. Bush the Elder.
- The First Gulf War was over before they could crawl.
- Osama Bin Laden has been their nation’s #1 threat for their whole lives. (Communists? That’s SO last century!)
- They’re more used to computers than pen and paper.
- They’ve never known life without Internet.
- Not only that, they’ve never known life without Instant Messaging, and Skype’s been around “for, like, forever!” (i.e. since they started high school).
- Say “Clinton” and they think “Hilary.”
- They don’t remember Monica Lewinski.
- They Google and YouTube as easily as they breathe.
- They probably don’t remember the controversial Bush-Gore election fiasco, since they were mostly only 9 years old, in the 4th grade.
- They were 10 years old, starting the 5th Grade, when 9/11 “changed everything.”
- They probably never wrote a research paper without access to Wikipedia.
- They were 11 years old, in the 6th Grade, when No Child Left Behind was signed into law.
- The Occupation of Iraq has been going on for a third of their lives, and Saddam Hussein was the biggest boogie man of their Middle School years.
- They were 14 years old, high school Freshmen, when Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans.
Just food for thought. Can you think of others?