January 13, 2006
A study conducted by MIT suggests that teens are more optimistic about innovation and technology than adults. For example, 22 % of teens surveyed think desktop computers will be obsolete by the year 2015, whereas only 10% of adults think so. The data revealed that teens also think inventions and technology will be used to solve problems like famine, pollution and unsafe drinking water.
Though teens are optimistic about the power of innovation, very few of them want to take part in it first hand. Of those surveyed, 17% wanted a career in arts, and 17% in medicine. 14% of the teens surveyed listed engineering as a top choice.
It is no surprise that teens are forward thinking, and optimistic about the changing world around them. However, I am surprised that more students are not interested in designing it themselves. In the future, I think the gap between places like Japan and the U.S. will grow wider where innovation is concerned. There is no way American youth will be able to keep up with technological innovation if these trends continue. But what can be done to encourage the desire to dream, as well as make the dream come alive?
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