Welcome to The Chronicle’s first special report devoted to age diversity on campus. We don’t have any secret formulas to help academics stay forever young — we’ll leave that to the beauty magazines — but we hope our coverage can serve as a kind of field guide to help readers better understand their elders — or their youngers. There are now five generations on campuses: The most senior scholars were born before World War II, followed by the baby boomers, then the somewhat hard-to-pin-down members of Gen X, then the much-studied millennials (less often called Gen Y), and finally, the young, tech-happy students of Gen Z. While these age groups have different values and cultural practices (and apps), our coverage suggests they may have far more in common than they realize.
Our annual Diversity report also features some compelling personal essays dealing with identity and disability — be sure to check them out. Copies of the full report are available for purchase here.
Here are four ways in which these generations differ from one another, and how administrators, faculty members, and students might bridge those gaps.
After being initially discouraged at the prospect of higher education, Robin Máxkii got degrees from two Native institutions. She had no idea what doors that experience would open for her.
Rich, white, straight men from the suburbs who comment on poverty, blackness, queerness, or systemic oppression should be greeted with skepticism. And if they hold a Ph.D. or a tenure-track job, it’s even worse.
This sortable table shows the percentages of full-time faculty members who were members of specific racial and ethnic groups at degree-granting colleges and universities in November 2015.