Beloit College Releases the Mindset List for This Year’s Entering Class of First-Year College Students, The Class of 2019
Beloit, Wis. — Members of the entering college class of 2019 were mostly born in 1997 and have never licked a postage stamp, have assumed that Wi-Fi is an entitlement, and have no first-hand experience of Princess Diana’s charismatic celebrity.
Each August since 1998, Beloit College has released the Beloit College Mindset List, providing a look at the cultural touchstones that shape the lives of students entering college this fall. For this year’s entering class there has always been Google; Email, informal to previous Millennials, has emerged as “the new formal” for them, while texting and other social media serve as the wild and wooly mode of exchange. Teachers have had to work overtime encouraging them to move beyond the Web and consult sources in books and journals. And Poland has always been a member of NATO, suggesting that Mr. Putin’s heartburn about Western expansion is at least as old as the new college kids are.
“The Class of 2019 will enter college with high technology an increasing factor in how and even what they learn,” said Charles Westerberg, Director of the Liberal Arts in Practice Center and Brannon-Ballard Professor of Sociology at Beloit College. “They will encounter difficult discussions about privilege, race, and sexual assault on campus. They may think of the ‘last century’ as the twentieth, not the nineteenth, so they will need ever wider perspectives about the burgeoning mass of information that will be heading their way. And they will need a keen ability to decipher what is the same and what has changed with respect to many of these issues.”
In fairness to the members of the entering class, this year’s Mindset List also includes an addendum of terms that faculty need to understand if they are going to communicate effectively.
The Beloit College Mindset List, which this year is as old as the entering students themselves, is created by Ron Nief, Emeritus Director of Public Affairs; Tom McBride, Emeritus Professor of English; and Charles Westerberg. Additional items on the list as well as commentaries and guides are found at www.beloit.edu/mindset and www.themindsetlist.com. Regular updates and discussions are on Facebook and Twitter.