New generation, new education

Story by Steve Fruehauf, Copy Editor

Throughout the course of our academic careers, our parents have always been the ones to push us to work harder. When we struggle with material, they have tried to offer words of encouragement. They would say things like “If I can do it, so can you” or “There’s always room to improve and work harder.”

But do they really understand what all is expected of us as students? It seems with the technological advances this current generation of students have been a part of, parents are losing touch with our educational expectations.

When comparing the education our parents received to the one we are receiving at UW-Eau Claire, there is a significant difference observed. The speed with which we take and interpret information now is a thousand times faster than theirs was.

We move through course material much quicker now because of it. It’s mainly due to the speed of the internet nowadays. Back in their day, our parents couldn’t go onto Google and pull something up immediately. Rather, they sifted through books or waited a half hour for their box-sized computer to boot up. Thus, the learning process was much slower.

Given the extra amount of material we cover due to these advances, the situation is polar opposite. This current generation of students are learning so much more. The added workload, in turn, causes students more stress because more things are expected to be finished. It seems parents don’t fully understand this concept at times.

Their lack of adaptation is sometimes too obvious as well. A good number of parents are the kind of people that take about 20 minutes to log onto Facebook. They spend half an hour attempting to look through their three notifications. I think it’s safe to say some struggle with fully accepting the changing times.

But with that said, I am in no way trying to discredit our parents’ education. They worked extremely hard for their respective degrees. In some cases, they worked even harder than us. They had to do things the hard way.

They weren’t able to get the quick answer. They had to deal with a slower process. But when they tell us we can do better or we aren’t trying hard enough, it’s hard to know whether they really understand what we are going through.

To combat this, I would urge parents to become more educated with the advances made in this generation and then talk to their child about their workload. This way, there will be a universal understanding of what is now expected of us as current students and they can move from there accordingly.

I just want to make sure that when I have children, I’ll be able to understand what they are going through whether it involves their education or something else. The world is all about adapting to new things and I don’t think I’ll have any issue molding with the times ahead as a father. I would hope the same for my parents.