The Student of Today

A couple of weeks ago I was privileged to attend a presentation by NASPA Executive Director Gwen Dungy. She came to UIUC as part of the  Enough is Enough Campaign to Stem Societal Violence. The event was sponsored by our Student Affairs Professional Development Committee. Yes, I know I’m not a professional, but I work in the Vice Chancellor’s office so I knew about it and asked if I could attend! The presentation looked at trends in Student Affairs and Higher Education from the 1970’s to the present. Even though the presentation was the most creative I’ve ever seen, I will focus on what was said in regards to her views on the college student of today and the future. Considering I will be a professional in two years, I found this very interesting and helpful. Knowing this information will help me to be strategic in how I work with students and the interventions I choose to use. To all of my future Student Affairs colleagues she said that:

  • The student of today wants flexibility in how they get their education.
  • We must look at our students’ role models. Some of the most successful people of our time did not go to college, they are entrepreneurs.
  • The student of today looks for affordability.
  • The student of today needs strong and consistent interactions with peers and mentors.
  • The student of today needs to figure out something they can do with their degree that hasn’t been done before (for job placement and security).
  • The student of today needs to be trained to be a thinker.
  • The student of today needs to contribute to nation building
    • Needs to see a college degree as a public good verses a personal benefit.
      • Am I doing something with my degree to keep my nation strong?
  • The student of today has to have deep and broad  knowledge in a variety of areas.

About Sha'terika Perkins

I hope to empower women and communities to experience intimacy with Jesus and discover their true self through inner healing, coaching, hospitality, and writing.

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