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Derrick Elsinger

English 102
Professor Newport
What Makes a Millennial

Millennials are a generation unlike any other. The special

characteristics that we have as a generation really define who we are as

people. Despite being accused of being the most selfish and individualized

generation, Millennials are the most generous and team orientated

generation of them all because of our generations acceptance of others and

involvement in extracurricular activities and team atmospheres throughout

our lives.

The Millennial generation is more than what meets the eye. Many

people see Millennials as the generation who only care about themselves. My

teacher in high school Mr. Marx, told me a story about a time when he was in

college and he made the selfish decision to go downtown to the bars on a

Friday night rather than help his father rearrange some furniture that he had

promised he would do for a couple of weeks now. Unfortunately, what just

seemed to be a selfish decision by my teacher at the time almost turned

deadly. Mr. Marxs failure to help his father that Friday night caused his father

to have a heart attack that night because of the extensive activity he was

doing earlier in the day. This was very eye opening to my teacher and

personally I believe this event changed my teacher to be the incredibly

generous person he is to this day. During my high school years, I played all

four years of football but my junior year was the most difficult year I have

had because of a couple of people on my team who were very selfish and did

not care about the team. They only cared about themselves and boosting

their statistical performance throughout the season. My head coach

addressed this issue multiple times but it seemed to have no effect. By these

players wanting to standout and look better than everyone else, it ended up

hurting our team and hindered us from winning more games that season.

The Millennial generation is not one that only cares about themselves

and their own individual well-being, rather it is a generation full of generosity

and the process of coming together as a team to reach a certain goal. Many

times, previous generations label the Millennials as the unmotivated and

being a self-absorbed generation (Halpern 2016). This is a false accusation

made by these people. Millennials not only want to help make the world a

better place but they are actually doing something about it (Halpern 2016).

The unselfish nature of Millennials and their willingness to help others has

certainly been proven to be true. One person cannot make a big impact

without the help of others. Team unity is what really makes Millennials strive

for greatness and to make a difference in not only their own life but the lives

of others. By having a group of people striving for the same goal, the sky is

the limit for what they can accomplish.

The Millennial generation is one not like any other except for

Generation Z which is post Millennial. The comparison between this

generation and previous generations in time is incredibly different.

Specifically, when in comparison with the Baby Boomers generation, there

seems to be little to no similarities. Beginning in the 1940s people lived in a

different time. Men were getting back from war and beginning to start a

family and then support and allow their family to grow and flourish. Men

would go off to work and the women would stay at home and take care of the

family. While in the Millennial generation, both parents if living in the same

household go to work five days a week. Together the husband and wife work

as a team to support their family between two incomes rather than one. Now

on the other side of the spectrum, the Millennial generation and generation Z

have the similarity of being extremely generous. According to The Daily

Telegraph, Generation Z is keen to look after their money to make the world

a better place (Wikipedia 2016). Through the busy world that everyone

seems to be living in today, people in these generations are willing to put

their selfishness aside to improve and give back to their community though

their valuable time and money.

The Millennial generation is willing to give up their personal interests

and own identity for the benefit of a team. People would prefer to have their

team become successful by reaching a common goal rather than achieving

individual success (Howe, Strauss 2003). When it comes to accepting

different unfamiliar situations in life or different people unlike themselves,

Millennials would be at the top of the chart. When presented with a complex

team project in school many times people are not allowed to pick their
groups. For the project this means someone may be working with a person

he or she has never met or talked to in their life time. But by being put into

this type of a situation, rather than having an awkward stage of silence

whenever the group meets, people have no choice but to accept one another

as teammates and work together to complete this project. This allows people

in the Millennial generation to grow into the team orientated type of people

that we are today.

Being brought up in a middle-class family, I have been given the

opportunity to observe life from a great perspective. I have seen everyone

from all walks of life. While walking downtown with my parents as a little kid,

we would see multiple people on the side of the road asking for money. I was

told by my parents that everyone who asked for money just wanted it to buy

either drugs or alcohol. Now maybe my parents are right in that some people

just want money for those things but as I have grown and matured

throughout life I have been more accepting of those people and realized that

the person begging on the side of the road could have lost his job and now

cannot afford to live in a home or even feed himself. I almost always give a

homeless person a couple of dollars because it is the right thing to do. Giving

to those less fortunate is so very rewarding within itself. It makes a person

have a feeling like no other.

As I have observed the Millennial generation during my life and also

had the privilege to be a part of it. It is very easy for me to see how generous

and team orientated my generation really is. When someone is in need, my

generation will be the first to jump into action and help in any way possible

regardless of what we have going on at the moment. This could range from

some child getting hurt on the playground to a bigger scale world problem

like allowing women to have the same income as men. The smaller scale

playground incident is able to be handled individually but when the issue

gets bigger thats when we as a generation come together as a team to

make our voices heard by putting our differences aside and striving to make

a difference for the benefit of society.

The Millennial generation is a unique generation in this world of ours.

There is so much going on with technology advancements, all the social

pressures that people feel, and the busy life styles people live with in todays

society. However, with that being said the Millennial generation knows what

is most important in life. The importance of life is to be generous by giving to

those less fortunate or those who are going through a rough time in life and

also the importance of being able to accomplish the everyday tasks of life as

a team. These characteristics are what define the best generation of them all

know as the Millennial generation.

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Word Count: 1,386

Works Cited

Howe, Neil, and William Strauss. Characteristics of the Millennial Generation, Rice,


Characteristics%20of%20the%20Millenial%20Generation.pdf. Accessed 9 Mar.

Halpern, Joe. Are Millennials the Generosity Generation?. Bentley University, 2016,

Accessed 9 Mar. 2017.

Generation Z, Wikipedia, 24 Oct. 2016,

Accessed 10 Mar. 2017.

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