Today’s student has the world at his or her fingertips. Literally. They, more than any other generation, are most likely to own a smartphone or tablet—a mobile, ever-ready source of information, communication, and opportunity. That’s power.
A lot of things have been said about technology’s effects on youth. There’s no doubt that there are both positive and negative impacts. But one thing’s for sure. Today’s generation of iPhone-toting students is empowered.
Expanding Learning Opportunity
The use of computers and other connected devices has revolutionized how students learn. Today’s student is learning in a globally-connected classroom with a wider set of resources to draw from than any generation before. The opportunities are endless.
Technology provides boundless sources to research and countless ways to display one’s findings. Thus, it provides students the choice to learn in the ways that best suit them. This effect is magnified with the rise in use of mobile devices. Not only are computers an invaluable learning tool, they are now at the ready anytime, anywhere.
The Freedom to Choose
Gone are the days when guidance counselors, parents, and college catalogs solely dictated a student’s college and career path. Students now hold the ability to explore career possibilities on their own terms, and with relative privacy and independence.
They can easily research any school or program. They can read up on program websites, read student blogs, and check out a school’s social media presence. They are checking out admissions, housing and financial aid information on their mobile devices.
With the amount of information available to them, today’s student has an unprecedented freedom of choice. Mobile technology is maximizing their independence and empowering them to make their own life decisions.
The Ability to Make a Difference
Technology is also helping young adults build the world they want to live in. They see it as a tool of social change. Today’s student has grown up with social media and has witnessed the power that it can have. They’ve seen change that’s come about as the result of viral pictures, cellphone videos, and hashtags.
They know change doesn’t have to come from the top anymore. Their tool for change? It’s in their hand, their pocket, their bag. Those mobile devices have taught youth an important message: any voice has the potential to be heard.
Knowing you have the ability to bring about change? That’s real empowerment.
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