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The college class of 2019: Never licked a postage stamp. Always expect Wi-Fi

Since 1998, Beloit College in Wisconsin has created a Mindset List around its incoming freshmen. The list helps capture the mindset of the arriving students by cataloging the cultural changes, innovations and trends of their lifetimes.

Of this incoming class of 2019, most of whom were born in 1997, the Mindset List notes: (This is just part of the list. Go here for the full list.)

Hybrid automobiles have always been mass produced.

Google has always been there, in its founding words, “to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible.”

They have never licked a postage stamp.

Email has become the new “formal” communication, while texts and tweets remain enclaves for the casual.

They have grown up treating Wi-Fi as an entitlement.

The NCAA has always had a precise means to determine a national champion in college football.

The announcement of someone being the “first woman” to hold a position has only impressed their parents.

Color photos have always adorned the front page of The New York Times.

Cell phones have become so ubiquitous in class that teachers don’t know which students are using them to take notes and which ones are planning a party.

Their parents have gone from encouraging them to use the Internet to begging them to get off it.



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About the Author

Maureen Downey has written editorials and opinion pieces about local, state and federal education policy since the 1990s.