The Younger Generation - Ham Radios Future?
As an atypical white male in my 60's I struggle to remain connected with young people, I read about Millennials and what our experts predict will result from the changes in society. The best I can conclude comes in the form of the following two quotes from an excellent 2012 study:
Main findings: Teens, technology, and human potential in 2020 – Pew Research Center
This is a satisfying read, a good way of quickly getting inside this generations psyche but it also contains a diverse selection of predictions from many onlookers. So, conclusions are difficult to identify but some things stuck in my mind when considering how to encourage Ham Radio survive.
- Students don't read books. They rarely read long articles. When they do read, they don't read for arguments. Instead, they skim the middles of pages, perhaps moving their eyes up and down if something interests them. They don't work on retaining what little they read, or even seem to think that taking notes is necessary. Their reasons seem to be that they can always find out whenever they need to. The future will belong to those who can focus. This will be an increasingly small and rare group of people.
- David D. Burstein, a student at New York University and author of Fast Future: How the Millennial Generation is Remaking Our World, noted, "A focus on nostalgia for print materials, penmanship, and analog clock reading skills will disappear as Millennials and the generation that follows us will redefine valued skills, which will likely include internet literacy, how to mine information, how to read online, etc."
I have been a mentor to several and helped them be successful. I measure success by them surviving (lost one to drug overdose) and being independent of their parents with sufficient extra resources to pass on the gift of mentorship. My advice has changed over the years, I am no longer suggesting Universities but today I say learn a skill or craft, better still learn a few. Out of all those I have been fortunate enough to witness and influence part of their lives, I have seen Doctors, Local Government, Teachers but the most successful is an Electrician who has built a small business that is thriving enabling them to live what I thought was the American dream. It's been ten years or so since I was able to connect and influence a young person. For me it is difficult to find a safe situation to communicate and so I now sit on the sidelines watching and looking for a new opportunity to give back.
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