Compassionate, Cynical, Thrifty
Generation Z 
After an interesting presentation by Corey Seemiller at the Independent Educational Consultants Association Spring conference in Denver, I felt motivated to learn more about these group of students. Many of our students are "GenZers" and we want to be able to connect with them and help them achieve their goals. In this newsletter, we summarized what we learned from Seemiller's presentation. 
For more information about Generation Z and Corey Seemiller, check out her website:

We hope you all are enjoying your summer!

-Leigh Ann, Cathy, Mary, Catherine, and Lena

Stay Connected
Move aside millenials: here comes Generation Z! Making up 25% of the U.S. population, these compassionate, responsible, and realistic students were born in the mid 1990's and later. Both 9/11 and the Great Recession have inspired the Gen Zers to become more financially responsible and to make the world a better place. But who are they and how do we engage them? Are we prepared as educators and parents to build relationships with them and inspire them? Let's find out!
Fly Away Helicopter Parents!
  • Gen Zers want to co-pilot: they want their parents to be involved
    • They are very connected to people around them who they trust
    • 69% of Gen Zers say their parents are their #1 role model

What are their learning preferences?
  • Intrapersonal - Gen Zers prefer learning independently and reflecting
    • Having time and space to brainstorm, process and reflect is very important
    • Many students like working on their own but surrounded by their classmates who are also working independently
  • Experiential- learning should be hands on AND connected to something bigger than them
    • Learning is seen as an opportunity to make the world a better place
      • "When I know more, I can help more"
      • "How can I use this information to make a difference?"
  • Modeling- Gen Zers feel most comfortable doing an activity after they are shown how
    • Gen Zers can be anxious about jumping in 
    • Educators should consider giving homework before the lesson

Technology Requirements
  • Gen Zers read a lot of news and get a lot of information on their phones. They know a little bit about a lot.
    • BuzzFeed, Reddit, and Twitter are some of their favorite news sources
    • Gen Zers aren't using Facebook in the same way or as often as Millenials
    • They don't like to share information, but would rather follow someone to see opinions and ideas 
    • Sharing is typically done through photos using Instagram and SnapChat 
    • YouTube instead of Google is how they learn to perform a task. Watching someone change a tire or cook fajitas online is easier than reading how to do it

Communication Preferences
  • #1 choice: In Person communication 
    • They want someone near them and to have a conversation with (who knew?)
  • #2 choice: Text messaging
  • #3 choice: Email and Phone
    • They want to see and meet people, rather than talk or email

The Future Looks Bright
  • Rather than volunteering, Gen Zers want to fix the problem 
    • For example, they want to eradicate hunger instead of volunteering in a food bank
  • They believe a college degree is necessary in accomplishing their goals
    • However, they are concerned about the cost of higher education 
    • They work hard to get scholarships and there is more interest in programs, like ROTC, to cover the cost of college
  • Gen Zers say:
  • "I believe coming from this place of enthusiasm for greater perception, variation and progression will allow my generation to become the greatest of all."  
  • "We ARE Diversity."
  • "If we don't do it, nobody will and I want to be the one to make a difference"

218 N. Lee Street, Suite 323
Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: 703-671-8316      Fax: 703-997-8438