If you’ve listened to news bites this week, you’ve likely heard the buzz about the majority of Millennials living with their parents. According to a recent study, more Millennials are living with their parents than with a significant other or on their own. These stats are a modern phenomenon because dating back to the 1880’s, 18- to 34-year-olds have always been most likely to live on their own or with a romantic partner. Although this isn’t shocking in light of many characterizations of Millennials, it does raise questions about how we are preparing this highly creative and innovative generation to pursue their dreams. Very few critics dispute the fact that today’s young people are perhaps the most creative and inspired generation in recent history, but Millennials have earned a bad rap when it comes to self-motivation, determination, and grit.
Those who’ve studied entrepreneurs have identified specific characteristics that risk-takers apply to reach their goals. For example, successful entrepreneurs do what they love, but they are also disciplined, organized, ready to compete, financially savvy, and strategic about how they will execute their plans. As educators, we must ask ourselves if we’re equipping our highly creative and innovative students with the skills they need to turn their ideas into action.
We designed the MACIE program to support our students’ individual goals. Those who come to our program seeking to do creative and innovative work with children have the opportunity to select a learning pathway that prepares them to execute their plans. Students with entrepreneurial goals can choose a business path that provides courses about topics like financing, management, and marketing. Some students come to our program to refine their artistic medium and learn how to share their process with children. These students might select a pathway of studio courses through the Fine Arts Department. Those students who seek to enter other fields like education and non-profits also have opportunities to craft pathways that will prepare them to do this work.
When the media is buzzing about Millennials, we should take the opportunity to consider how we’re equipping these 18- to 34-year-olds to take action on their world-changing ideas. If recent data is true, 60% of Millennials consider themselves to be entrepreneurs, but in reality, they’re starting companies at the lowest rate in 25 years. Perhaps we should not only be asking how we can support creative and innovative thinking, but also, how can we prepare students to take action?
If you’re ready to put your plans into action, join us.