Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Are Millennials Politically Engaged Inside and Outside of the Classroom?

Are Millennials Politically Engaged Inside and Outside of the Classroom?

As a millennial, I feel that this has been the most interesting election since I have been able to vote. As a freshman in college, I was VERY interested in the 2000 election. In 2000, on the count/recount night, I remained awake until 1:00 a.m. to see who the new president would be. This time I have watched CNN and Fox News every night to hear the new stories that emerge from the political battleground.

However, it seems that my undergraduate students are not experiencing the same level of exhilaration that I have at this time. On the first few days of class, I asked my students if they watched CNN on a regular basis and if they were keeping up with this year's election. None of the 75 students in my lower level classes watched CNN on a regular basis and only a small percentage of the students were actually keeping up with the election.

This was very discouraging to me and I felt that my millennial students were not politically engaged. However, the students from my upper level course were politically engaged and were excited about the election. This is a very small example, but are older millennial students more politically engaged than younger millennial students? Hmmmm... this may be a great research study.

In addition, over the summer, I read a book titled, " Millennial Makeover: MySpace, YouTube, and the Future of American Politics by Morley Winograd and Michael D. Hais. This book was VERY interesting and I plan to write a book review about it in a few weeks. It featured a wonderful historical analysis of the candidates and the political parties. The book gave the millennial generation freedom from the usual negative portrayal of their generation. In addition, after reading this book, I have braced myself for the wonderful leaders that will emerge from my generation (the millennial generation).

Access the authors' website here -

- Millennial Professor


  1. Totally unrelated to the post, but after reading this, I realize I am old enough to be your mother. :(

  2. Amanda,

    Yes, this post really puts my age into perspective. I wanted to post this one about my relationship to the political arena, because 2000 was the year that I really became politically engaged.

    The fact that "you are old enough to be my mother" reinterates the need to have effective cross-generational interactions to foster effective communication in the workplace. We are still colleagues and we can work together to offer different perspectives on an issue.

    I think that it is wonderful to have this type of interaction in the workplace.

    *By the way, I was writing that post late at night and neglected to write that I was a freshman in college that year (not a senior in high school).

    Have a wonderful day!


Hi! Please contribute a comment (or two) about the post! :)