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Why Youth Activism Matters

By Joanna George

The youth of America have been called many things.

Millennials have often been referred to as lazy, self-involved, and technology obsessed, while Generation Z has been called “Millennials on steroids”, technology-dependent, and cautious about the future. (1)

Youth Activism

Something that we should call Millennials and Generation Z is Activists. Many people don’t discuss how the youth of America is impacting the world through their independence and ability to take action.

An example of their activism was seen all throughout the world on Friday, March 15th, when students participated in the Climate Change Walkout.

Along with this movement, here are five other ways that the youth of America are impacting the future of the world.

1. Through Protests and School Walkouts:

The amount of students who have participated in strikes and protests have increased dramatically throughout the past few years. For example, over 200,000 students participated in March For Our Lives, a movement against gun violence. (2)

2. Through Social Media:

Many believe that the younger generations only have experienced social media as a form of cyberbulling and obsession that wastes time. However, there are young people all throughout the world that use it to raise awareness and positivity. For example, teenager Joshua Williams, the founder of Joshua’s Heart, helped raise over $550,000 online to help feed the poor and homeless, as well as recruit over 10,000 volunteers to help this initiative. (3)

3. Through Volunteering:

Students often have to volunteer as a requirement for school or church, but teens like Megan Stark, have gone above and beyond by traveling to countries like Ubuntu, South Africa to volunteer in the local communities. (4)

4. Through Taking Initiative:

The younger generations of the world have become increasingly more confident and independent. According to researchers, “these cohorts tend to come right after disruptive generations that change society in significant ways, such as millennials. When adaptive groups come of age, they take the problems that were brought to light by their predecessors and try to work them out.”(5)

Joanna George is a senior at Tappan Zee High School and completing her Senior Seminar Internship project with the Sisters of Saint Dominic of Blauvelt, New York.


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