Now that we are ensconced in the new year of 2015, we’re getting closer to finding a name for the generation born after 2000. Some ideas that have been floated are Generation Z, the iGeneration, Gen Tech, and 2K’s, among others.
The generation born just before them, between 1980 and 2000, were previously known as Gen Y or Echo Boomers but are now known simply as Millennials. At approximately 80 million strong in the United States, they are the largest generation in the country, comprising almost 25% of the total population.
Pundits agree on some of the salient features of this generation, but in other ways they are hard to categorize. Generally the children of Baby Boomers, they often reflect the values of that generation: they are often liberal and civic-minded, less religious than those before them, and share a strong sense of community, both local and global. At the same time, others note that they reflect the self-focus of their parents’ Me Generation outlook with its sense of entitlement and narcissism.
Millennials are the most educated cohort in the US and, as the first generation to grow up with the Internet, practically all of them are well versed in the use of digital technology. They network and experience relationships through social media and are likely to hang out in groups. Saddled with large student loan debts, fewer have married and purchased a home by the age most older generations did. Delaying these traditional rites of passage, some have labeled them kidults.
And, most significantly, Millennials have been greatly affected by the weak economy throughout the world, particularly the poor job market. With one out of two recent college graduates either unemployed or underemployed, it has been predicted that it will take a decade for this group to catch up to an earnings level reflective of their training.
One result of all of these factors is the boomerang phenomenon that has become a way of life for almost 17% of young adults. They’ve moved back into their childhood home, creating challenges for their parents who may have just recently adjusted to the empty nest. Want to know more about how to survive and even thrive in a re-populated and crowded family nest? Be sure to visit us here for information, support and tips on how to manage.
We’ll be blogging more in 2015 about Millennials as we explore the issues that drive them and address how parents can react to their kids’ lifestyle changes. So whether you’re a Millennial yourself, a Baby Boomer or a member of Gen X, you’ll find stimulating posts here as we search for ways to connect and grow as families and friends.