The Beloit College Mindset List for the Class of 2014

If it’s August, it must be back-to-school time. And that means it’s time for the Mindset List for the Class of 2014.


Each August since 1998, Beloit College has released the Beloit College Mindset List. It provides a look at the cultural touchstones that shape the lives of students entering college this fall. (Click here for a free download on how cultural milestones have shaped the four generations in the workforce.)


The list was originally created as a reminder to faculty to be aware of dated references. It has quickly become a catalog of the rapidly changing worldview of each new generation. And just for the record, most students entering college for the first time this fall were born in 1992.


College-Freshmen-MoveFor these students, Benny Hill, Sam Kinison, Sam Walton, Bert Parks and Tony Perkins have always been dead.  

1. Few in the class know how to write in cursive.
2. Email is just too slow, and they seldom if ever use snail mail.
3. “Caramel macchiato” and “venti half-caf vanilla latte” have always been street corner lingo.
4. John McEnroe has never played professional tennis.
5. Clint Eastwood is better known as a sensitive director than as Dirty Harry.
6. Doctor Kevorkian has never been licensed to practice medicine.
7. Korean cars have always been a staple on American highways.
8. Fergie is a pop singer, not a princess.
9. They never twisted the coiled handset wire aimlessly around their wrists while chatting on the phone.
10. DNA fingerprinting and maps of the human genome have always existed.
11. Woody Allen, whose heart has wanted what it wanted, has always been with Soon-Yi Previn.
12. Unless they found one in their grandparents’ closet, they have never seen a carousel of Kodachrome slides.
13. They’ve never recognized that pointing to their wrists was a request for the time of day.
14. The first computer they probably touched was an Apple II; it is now in a museum.
15. Czechoslovakia has never existed.
16. Adhesive strips have always been available in varying skin tones.
17. Bud Selig has always been the Commissioner of Major League Baseball.
18. There have always been HIV positive athletes in the Olympics.
19. American companies have always done business in Vietnam.
20. The dominance of television news by the three networks passed while they were still in their cribs.
21. Children have always been trying to divorce their parents.
22. Toothpaste tubes have always stood up on their caps.
23. Beethoven has always been a dog.
24. Having hundreds of cable channels but nothing to watch has always been routine.
25. They first met Michelangelo when he was just a computer virus.


And if you don’t feel a bit unsettled by a few of these event passings, 2010 is the 40th anniversary of the movie M.A.S.H. and the 30th anniversary of The Empire Strikes Back! 

To read the complete list, go to the Mindset List website.

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