Skip to comments.Beloit College's Mindset List [Professor's Reminder of Incoming Freshmens' Worldview]
Posted on 08/23/2006 3:08:55 PM PDT by Incorrigible
By The Associated Press Wed Aug 23, 12:27 AM ET
Every year, Beloit College releases its Mindset List to give a snapshot of the world view of the incoming freshmen class. The list for the Class of 2010:
1. The Soviet Union has never existed and therefore is about as scary as the student union.
2. They have known only two presidents.
3. For most of their lives, major U.S. airlines have been bankrupt.
4. Manuel Noriega has always been in jail in the U.S.
5. They have grown up getting lost in giant retail stores known as "big boxes."
6. There has always been one Germany.
7. They have never heard anyone actually "ring it up" on a cash register.
8. They are wireless, yet always connected.
9. A stained blue dress is as famous to their generation as a third-rate burglary was to their parents'.
10. Thanks to pervasive head phones in the back seat, parents have always been able to speak freely in the front.
11. A coffee has always taken longer to make than a milkshake.
12. Smoking has never been permitted on U.S. airlines.
13. Faux fur has always been a necessary element of style.
14. The Moral Majority has never needed an organization.
15. They have never had to distinguish between the St. Louis Cardinals baseball and football teams.
16. DNA fingerprinting has always been admissible evidence in court.
17. They grew up pushing their own miniature shopping carts in the supermarket.
18. They grew up with and have outgrown faxing as a means of communication.
19. "Google" has always been a verb.
20. Text messaging is their e-mail.
21. Milli Vanilli has never had anything to say.
22. Mr. Rogers, not Walter Cronkite, has always been the most trusted man in America.
23. Bar codes have always been on everything, from library cards and snail mail to retail items.
24. Madden has always been a game, not a Super Bowl-winning coach.
25. Phantom of the Opera has always been on Broadway.
26. "Boogers" candy has always been a favorite for grossing out parents.
27. There has never been a "sky hook" in the NBA.
28. Carbon copies are oddities found in their grandparents' attics.
29. Computerized player pianos have always been tinkling in the lobby.
30. Non-denominational mega-churches have always been the fastest growing religious organizations in the U.S.
31. They grew up in minivans.
32. Reality shows have always been on television.
33. They have no idea why we needed to ask "... Can we all get along?"
34. They have always known that "In the criminal justice system the people have been represented by two separate yet equally important groups."
35. Young women's fashions have never been concerned with where the waist is.
36. They have rarely mailed anything using a stamp.
37. Brides have always worn white for a first, second, or third wedding.
38. Being techno-savvy has always been inversely proportional to age.
39. "So" as in "Sooooo New York," has always been a drawn-out adjective modifying a proper noun, which in turn modifies something else.
40. Affluent troubled teens in Southern California have always been the subjects of television series.
41. They have always been able to watch wars and revolutions live on television.
42. Ken Burns has always been producing very long documentaries on PBS.
43. They are not aware that "flock of seagulls hair" has nothing to do with birds flying into it.
44. Retin-A has always made America look less wrinkled.
45. Green tea has always been marketed for health purposes.
46. Public school officials have always had the right to censor school newspapers.
47. Small, white holiday lights have always been in style.
48. Most of them have never had the chance to eat bad airline food.
49. They have always been searching for "Waldo."
50. The really rich have regularly expressed exuberance with outlandish birthday parties.
51. Michael Moore has always been showing up uninvited.
52. They never played the game of state license plates in the car.
53. They have always preferred going out in groups as opposed to dating.
54. There have always been live organ donors.
55. They have always had access to their own credit cards.
56. They have never put their money in a "Savings & Loan."
57. Sara Lee has always made underwear.
58. Bad behavior has always been getting captured on amateur videos.
59. Disneyland has always been in Europe and Asia.
60. They never saw Bernard Shaw on CNN.
61. Beach volleyball has always been a recognized sport.
62. Acura, Lexus and Infiniti have always been luxury cars of choice.
63. Television stations have never concluded the broadcast day with the national anthem.
64. LoJack transmitters have always been finding lost cars.
65. Diane Sawyer has always been live in Prime Time.
66. Dolphin-free canned tuna has always been on sale.
67. Disposable contact lenses have always been available.
68. "Outing" has always been a threat.
69. "Oh, The Places You'll Go" by Dr. Seuss has always been the perfect graduation gift.
70. They have always "dissed" what they don't like.
71. The U.S. has always been studying global warming to confirm its existence.
72. Richard M. Daley has always been the Mayor of Chicago.
73. They grew up with virtual pets to feed, water, and play games with, lest they die.
74. Ringo Starr has always been clean and sober.
75. Professional athletes have always competed in the Olympics.
By DINESH RAMDE,
Associated Press Writer Wed Aug 23, 7:45 AM ET
BELOIT, Wis. - For most teens starting college this fall, disposable contact lenses have always been available, wars and revolutions have always been televised, and a stamp was rarely needed for communication.
Born in 1988, incoming freshmen grew up knowing only two presidents, searching for Waldo and eating dolphin-free canned tuna.
Those are some of the 75 cultural landmarks on the Beloit College Mindset List, an annual compilation that offers a glimpse of the world view through the eyes of each incoming class. The list was released Wednesday by this private school of 1,250 in this southern Wisconsin city.
"The list isn't looking strictly for chronological accuracy," said Ron Nief, the school's director of public affairs. "It's more about capturing cultural horizons and world views."
For example, item No. 2 says the class of 2010 has only known two presidents because the third, the elder George Bush, was voted out of office when they were only 4 years old, Nief said.
Billy Carter, Billy Martin and Lucille Ball all died before the incoming freshmen were born, according to the study's authors. But Julie Heney said she remembers the classic comedienne from imitating her in skits.
How did Heney, 18, learn about Ball?
"I googled her," said the Montpelier, Vt. native, confirming No. 19 on the Mindset list: "'Google' has always been a verb" for this generation.
Item No. 33 reflects a 1992 quote by black motorist Rodney King, who was beaten by four white officers. A jury's verdict acquitting the officers of the most serious charges spawned race riots and compelled King to issue a plea for peace.
The item reads: "They have no idea why we needed to ask, '... Can we all get along?'"
Mitchell Young, 18, of Highland Park, Ill., said the quote was familiar.
"I've heard it before. It sounds like a John Lennon thing," Young said.
The list gives faculty a better understanding of the cultural attitudes of the incoming class, said English professor Tom McBride, who helps Nief assemble the list.
"Once upon a time faculty could talk about the Watergate scandal. This reminds them that now they have to explain it first," McBride said.
Students didn't agree with all the items on the list, for example, that they grew up with reality-television shows and have always had access to their own credit cards.
"I think these things might apply to some people, but not to everyone, said Brigid Wold-Walsh, 18, from Seattle.
Nief acknowledged that most of the items are relevant to white middle-class America.
McBride said the lists, begun in 1998, often depress people who find themselves wondering how they got so old so fast.
"But it's an illusion. It's not them getting old, it's culture that changes so fast," he said. "Trends and fashions are so short-lived that a lot happens in just 18 years."
Generation Y bump!
They probably never saw a vinyl LP album, by 1988 cd's had pretty much replaced them.
Google's trademark lawyers are gonna get after them for that one...
I remember the first Gulf War, on the first night. By about midnight reports had stopped coming in but it was obvious we had air supremacy. When we went to bed I said to my wife: "We just had a war with thirty-something nations involved and the pivotal battle was fought, packaged, and delivered to our TVs between dinner and bedtime".
Ping list for the discussion of the politics and social (and sometimes nostalgic) aspects that directly effects Generation Reagan / Generation-X (Those born from 1965-1981) including all the spending previous generations (i.e. The Baby Boomers) are doing that Gen-X and Y will end up paying for.
Freep mail me to be added or dropped. See my home page for details and previous articles.
My youngest calls LPs "those black CD things".
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles would kick the Power Rangers @ss.
The Dukes of Hazzard had been off the air for two years when they were born.
They were born after Crocodile Dundee came out.
Ferris Bueller could have graduated high school, gotten married, and been their father.
They consider Lindsey Lohan an older woman.
They were born the year "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?", "Big,", and "Ernest Saves Christmas" came out.
Hahahaha....one day we told our middle son that we used to own a black and white tv and he asked why we would want one of those? The whole notion of its existence was a foreign concept.
Go back a little further when 45's were the way 'kids bought music'.
That would be my parent's generation.
Should have told him, "So we can watch Casablanca, even though Ted turner screwed it up with color!"
52. They never played the game of state license plates in the car.
They got that one wrong, huh?
We just did that on our 9 state college scouting trip.
What schools are you considering?
My son is looking at Clemson, James Madison, Belmont Abbey, UNC Charlotte and UNC Wilmington. There were a lot more but after our trip he has whittled it down to those.
Did he look at Hampden Sydney? We're in NC and our son was looking in VA and NC also. He leaves today for his second year at HSC. He loves it there!
This is the one that bothers me the most. They are out of high school and have no idea what an achievement it was to see the Soviet Union come crumbling down. They have no concept of what it was to hear about people having to stand in line for toilet paper or walk into a market with lots of empty shelves or how one never trusted anyone because they could be turned into the watchers in the government for even thinking aloud what life must be like outside the Iron Curtain.
In september, 1989, when some of these kids were less than a year old, I went to Basic Training at Lackland AFB, and the halway in my flight's barracks had a mural on the wall of an F-16 flying through a Soviet flag, tearing it to shreds. The Wall came down while I was at tech school that November, and I watched the bombers get towed off the alert pad at Wurtsmith when Bush took them off alert.
I don't feel old, but I marvel at the fact that these glories of my youth probably mean little or nothing to these kids, and that was what I was hoping for the whole time. It is beautiful.
They never played the game of state license plates in the car.
Huh? Are they saying this because the kids all play gameboys and watch DVDs in the car, or because they license plates have changed so much?
My wife's collection of 45's amazed my kids...especially since they're about the size of a CD but only hold two songs.
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