Millennials don’t deserve their negative reputation

by Tim Pate

Some business leaders are scared of hiring Generation Y employees. That is the unfortunate truth. Many companies have been led to believe that the Millennial generation – that age group ranging from approximately 18 to 34 – is composed of unreliable, lazy, naïve workers, too incompetent, too care free, or too self-interested to do an effective job.

Take, for example, this article by Hollis Thomases on Inc.com: “11 Reasons a 23-Year-Old Shouldn’t Run Your Social Media.” A post that garnered much feedback on both sides of the debate, Thomases’ piece paints a picture of Generation Y that is anything but appealing to an employer. This pervasive conception and regard of Millennials is not only detrimental to the success of members of Generation Y, but also to the potential of the companies unwilling to hire the youngest members of the workforce.

Image credit: Calita Kabir, Flickr.com

With our (and yes, I am among the ranks of the Millennials) strange, fleeting trends, our deep involvement in social media, and our love for music that sounds more akin to the belching of a robot than the artwork of a master composer, I can sympathize to an extent with the apprehension displayed on behalf of experienced managers of the older generations. After all, we tend to fear that which we don’t understand.

However, I believe that it’s time that recruiters and interviewers stopped judging applicants based on a preconceived notion of what it means to be a Millennial and instead evaluated prospects by their merits. As part of my position with the College of Business Department of Communications, I get to profile exceptional students at Colorado State University who absolutely shatter the image of a typical Millennial as proposed by people such as Thomases.

One need only look as far as the News & Events section of our website, where these students are highlighted each month for their extraordinary work – academic, professional, and humanitarian. Click the link for the story about Collin Brown, and you will discover a young man exploring the intricacies of the Internet Protocol system, a highly technical concept foreign to many people across generations. Brown’s youthful curiosity and dedication to discovering the latest in technology bolstered his academic and professional success – it did not hinder it.

Or you can browse the work of the Global Social and Sustainable Enterprise MBA program in the College of Business, where young entrepreneurs are developing sustainable business ideas to improve lives through ingenious business ventures. The work of these students crosses boarders, brings communities and cultures together, and creates opportunity to address global issues in innovative ways.

Thankfully, there are people out there (of Generation Y and outside of it) who are defending the integrity of the Millennials. Publications such as Forbes and Ragan’s PR Daily have published articles reinforcing the ability and aptitude of young workers, and I speak on behalf of most Millennials in saying that I appreciate their efforts.

In CSU’s own College of Business and across the country, young, aspiring students and professionals are looking for the chance to demonstrate the impressive feats of which they are capable. They have been equipped with skill-sets that prepare them to face challenges that doubters say they are incapable of conquering. I say it’s time to give Millennials the chance to prove themselves – I hypothesize that the results could surprise us all.

What are your thoughts? Do some businesses underestimate the abilities of Generation Y? Or are people justified in being cautious about hiring Millennials? Submit your opinions in the comments below. 

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Looking Forward to the Spring Semester

by Tim Pate

A new semester has begun at Colorado State University, and that means plenty to anticipate for CSU students. As the warm weather rolls around, students will get back in the rhythm of being a Ram full-time.

For freshman, this time of year means transitioning from apprehension at the prospect of new environments and challenges to excitement at embracing the next steps in a college career. At the other end of the spectrum, senior students realize that this is their last semester at CSU, which means charging into new territory come May. There are decisions to be made and opportunities to be had.

Spring semester at CSU is always a great time of year. The blossoming trees of the Oval never fail to provide a spectacle, and warmer days mean later nights spent on the intramural fields. It is also now that students begin thinking of their summer plans – be they visiting family, traveling or studying abroad, or staying in Fort Collins to work and take classes. Springtime shows students the multitude of possibilities ahead of them.

The College of Business too is alive with exciting prospects for students, faculty, and friends of the College. Events for students of all interests are on the horizon, as are career fairs and expos to get students connected with the business world. Keep your eyes open for opportunities to engage with the College of Business – the programs and events available are continuing to improve with each new semester.

This semester, you can look forward to these events and more:

Global Finance Summit

Friday, March 1, 2013
7:00 am – 1:45 p.m.
University Center for the Arts
Colorado State University
1400 Remington Street, Fort Collins, CO

Th­e Global Finance Summit will feature expert commentary and debate from financial professionals, economists, and academics on topics relating to the overall state of the global and domestic economy, fiscal and monetary policy, investment strategies, and business challenges.

Career Management Center Job and Internship Expo

Wednesday, February 6, 2013
4:30 – 6:30 p.m.
Rockwell Hall West, Atrium
Colorado State University
Fort Collins, CO

This event is an exclusive opportunity for employers to engage with College of Business student and alumni (closed event for Business Majors) in Rockwell West, the College’s state-of-the-art facility.  The event is smaller and more intimate, allowing recruiters more time to have meaningful interactions with our students.

Everitt Real Estate Center presents Mark Fleming: “Once a Hare, Now a Tortoise”

Wednesday, February 13, 2013
4 – 6:30 p.m.
Fort Collins Hilton
425 West Prospect Road, Fort Collins, CO

Mark Fleming will talk about what is in store as we head into the traditional buying season in the housing market in 2013, how the economy will fare given the political and fiscal situations, and whether housing will be as strong in 2013 as it was in 2012.

Make sure to check the College of Business website and to keep up with us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up-to-date on the latest happenings around the College – there are sure to be plenty.