Generation Y is unlike any other generation in our history. With a touch of a button and the switching on of a mobile cellular device, we are instantaneously connected to the four corners of the earth, and can communicate and express our thoughts with the entire world. We have the power to change the future just by sitting down at a laptop, and with every moment of every day our generation is learning, growing and evolving so that we can make the world a better place. However, with all of this potential and power come some setbacks and challenges for the young generation of global social networking pioneers.
Student Debt and the Acquisition of Loans for College
The majority of today’s adult youth faces the issue of paying for college, and they share the same burden of debt. Tuition for both public and private universities have risen distinctively within the past few decades, and students find themselves swimming in a sea of financial responsibilities with the interest rate of private loans. Although having a degree boosts the majority of people’s chances for better job security and initial employment, the costs of obtaining a degree from a four-year college have deterred many young Generation Y members away.
Possible Solution: During his presidency, President Barack Obama has fought to double funding for Pell Grants and establish a college tax credit. Obama has successfully prevented federal student loan interest rates from doubling for more than 7 million students, has capped federal student loan repayments at 10 percent of income and has spoken about reforming education during his 2013 State of Union speech so that the degrees obtained by students will match the jobs available for new graduates.
Unemployment and Dealing with the Cost of Living
According to recent Labor Department reports, job growth has remained at a relatively constant pace in January with employers adding 157,000 payroll positions, but the unemployment rate has risen to 7.9 percent as of late. The unemployment rate for our generation alone has even seen a greater increase in unemployment with reports of the rate increasing to 13.1 percent last month, according to the January jobs report from the U.S. Department of Labor. And on top of unemployment woes, if Congressional negotiations over fiscal policy and solutions to our budget crisis are not completed by the end of this week, severe spending cuts will kick in on March 1 and the nation will end up seeing more money taken out of their paychecks along with higher income taxes.
Possible Solution: According to a study completed by Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce, the unemployment rate for recent college graduates was 6.8 percent in 2012 which is well below the national rate, as well as the rate of this generation. Being trained for the jobs available out in the workforce would help lessen the rate of unemployment whether it was at a four-year university or another training program, and offering more solutions and alternatives to millennials entering the workforce is also ideal. But as far as the rest of the financial crisis is concerned, Congress needs to get its act together.
Job Satisfaction and Security
Our generation today hopes for a more flexible schedule of work hours, and often feels as though the hard 9-to-5 work life isn’t necessarily for them. At the same time, however, finding job security during these tough economic times seems like a distant memory of the past.
Possible solution: Just as our generation defines how we interact and communicate with each other in our social life with the intertwining of technological advances in social networking, we are beginning to incorporate these popular social networking sites and new technologies into our jobs and other aspects of our everyday lives.
Places such as Miss Millennia Magazine try and connect like-minded young people together so that we can help each other change our futures. Pushing for more innovation and thinking out of the box is what will elevate our generation and lift us into a better tomorrow. Our creative minds and inspiring thoughts have got us this far—all we need is for our generation to continue to look up and into the future.