Sunday, August 21, 2016

The Millennial Student

People talk about the millennials as if they are a different species. But these are the product of current parenting and economic circumstances/situation.

I am convinced that a number of millennials have been cheated by everyone around them: their family, their school and of course their country.

Why do I feel so?

Their families let them down by placing so much burden on them of their family and financially.  These young students take all the responsibility of an adult family member but not that of their education. It could be that their parents are also working hard and need help in managing the home.  The students have to thus finance their education themselves.

Their government fails them by providing them free K-12 but not taking care of the quality of that free such expensive and such a key training.

In their schools, K-12, they have not been intellectually challenged. They have been told to do busy work that makes them feel they are putting in the effort and that is all that they are graded for. They have not been forced to memorize, not been asked to think critically, they are not taught math and writing skills.  Their hard work is limited to open book work and busy work. As a result they come to college unprepared for what is required to be a good student.

I feel these students have been cheated out of a good education.  They are not trained for good study skills, the determination, the discipline or the inspired to do well intellectually.  I am not in a place to say what the K-12 education is like, all I see is their product and that product is not to par.

Of course I also teach at a primarily 2 year college which has an open enrollment policy. We probably don't get the top of the GPA pool.  Which is fine. I don't mind having a B student...What I cannot handle is that if they are getting a D that they don't seem to care about it. They don't bother to seek help from the instructors, from tutors etc even though all these services are free. They would rather repeat the course rather than studying and getting through it. It is heartbreaking to see their state. And then there are some who are getting B but will withdraw because they want an A only. There is no in between.

I just don't know how to get through these kids.  They don't come for advise and if they do they cannot understand. They have their personal home situations which I don't feel like I am the right person to talk to them about. I don't know if they are frustrated or not, but I certainly am frustrated by all this. Why? Because my administrators hold me responsible for my students passing my classes.  They don't care that their students have so many struggles at home: taking care of parents and grandparents, being the only earning member of their family, taking care of kids, not having transportation for school, and finally not enough goal setting for their future - this is of course the responsibility of the college. I can only do so much.

I have my own issues also as a professor....another blog :-)

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