What characteristics define Millennials?

Bailey Ayres, Sports Editor

What is a Millennial? That seems to be a hot question right now. It is the new term for what was once Generation Y. A 2009 report by MetLife defined the generation between the years of 1977 to 1994. But a 2016 report by Goldman Sachs has the Millennial generation being born between the years of 1980 to 2000.

Obvously, there seems to be some gray area in what defines a Millennial. The Millennial birth time period is big as the Baby Boomers, which is around a 20 year time period (1946 – 1964).
With Baby Boomers and Millennials having a giant age range of people in it, it’s hard to categorize them into one grouping. Not all the Baby Boomers were teenagers during the time the Beatles where famous. Similarly, not all Millennials were old enough to watch new episodes of “Saved By the Bell” on TV.

Having this 20-year gap within the Millennial generation is a little bit crazy. If you put someone who was born in 1980 with a person who was born in 2001, how much would they have in common? Would each get the other’s pop culture references?

I feel like I belong in Generation Y. That is apparently no longer a thing. I was born in 1989 – a 90s kid. I can probably sing a long with all the NSYNC, Backstreet Boys, and Spice Girls songs word for word. Those who are older than me can probably sing a New Kids on the Block song better than I can. But the Millennials have kids who are younger than me, and know every word to a Jonas Brothers song.

The “Generation Y” part of the Millennials know the golden rule of watching a VCR tape (and know what a VCR is), that you should “be kind and rewind.” Generation Z, those Millennials who where born in the 1990s, have mostly experienced DVD and Blue Ray movie watching most of their lives.

Generation X and the older Millennials would probably want to call themselves Generation X (people who where born in 1980 through 1985). The are people who are working fulltime jobs and have young families.

Then you got those people who are like me, who are in that 1985 through 1990 age group. Some of these people are getting married, having kids and settling down, but the other half is just getting started on their careers.

Then you’ve got the 1990 through 1995 age group, who are graduating college, are getting through college. Then you got the youngest age group of the Millennials, who are going through their last years of high school, and starting their new part of their lives in college. The youngest Millennials are just getting their drivers licenses.

One thing that all the Millennials have experienced is the creation of the Internet, and how fast it took off.

I remember, doing little research projects for school growing up, we were taught how to looks things up in a book and the library without Google. Then as I got older, I remember Googling was the number one and fastest way to research things for a project. Plus, now the Madison College library has all their databases online for us all to access for research papers.

I personally do not like being called a Millennial. I would rather be called Generation Y. But looking at the whole fact that Millennial means that I was born 11 years before the turn of the Millennium makes it feels pretty special.

I was born in a generation that would be seeing a lot of change in technology and we would be part of this new world of the Millennium.

We are a part of the Millennium. Who in their lifetime can say they lived through the changing of a Millennium? I am slowly accepting this term, but I would always be comfortable being called Generation Y.