This year’s presidential candidates have stirred up a lot of strong opinions in the U.S., and Millennial sentiment isn’t any different. Many are passionate about the policies our next president should pass, and how that would affect the next generation of workers and students. Young Invincibles asked Millennials what they want to see prioritized in the next four years regarding health care, higher education, and job opportunities.
Maaja Ashemu, 19
I would like to see our next president really hone in and conquer the reality of our country’s serious issues surrounding sexual health and sexual assault. This affects our entire generation whether they realize it or not. In my own community, I’ve seen men my own age with very poor sexual education experience, and therefore pursue personal relationships with all the wrong information. Likewise, our girls and women are stigmatized for sexual activity which deters them from awareness and acceptance of their sexuality. Because of the “hush hush” culture around sex in my community, many are left to use media and peers as the only sources for information, which rarely reflects accurate, safe, and consensual approaches to intimacy. The next president should make it a focus to truly push for a greater and wider range in sexual education for Millennials and what that means for each individual. With the right leadership that prioritizes youth health and safety, I want to see numbers of assault decrease.
Miles Le, 23
It’s difficult to even begin to pin our hopes onto a single president. However, that doesn’t mean that they can’t begin to enact changes in policy with lasting effects. As we continue to see wealth inequality grow and systems of labor becoming more exploitive, it would be nice to have some amount of alleviation, whether through paid sick leave, or health care programs that provide for the health of the laborer without barriers to access. Labor permeates our social fabric and by focusing solely on the “Pathway to Middle Class” our next president runs the risk of ignoring the systems that establish hierarchal caste systems in the first place.
Kameron Haake, 19
I would like to see our next president address quite a few things. Specifically, I would like to see a candidate who supports the idea that a student can work throughout the summer and be able to afford college tuition. This is a very real need for my generation. Right now, education is simply unaffordable for too many Americans, and most graduate with massive amounts of debt. Millennials should feel that they have a right to pursue an education if they want to, not intimidated by the expensive cost. I would also like to see a candidate who supports de-stigmatizing mental health, a significant part of many people’s college experience. Additionally, I want my next president to address sexual assault on college campuses; one who sees how prevalent of a problem it is for Millennials who want to receive an education in a safe environment. In the end, I want a president who is empathetic and understanding of the unique challenges this diverse generation faces.
Maria Gonzalez, 20
What I want from our next president to address is college affordability. I am going to be a first generation college student, and I am facing issues that no one else in my family has experienced yet. It worries me deeply that I am going to have to go into such great debt just to get a good education. Plus my family lives just above the poverty line, and I am not an only child. I fear that the cost of college won’t just affect me, but that my parents are also going to go into huge debt. I would like to see how we could make college degrees affordable for all students in this country, especially first generation students like me or who are lower class. What kind of help would we be able to get from the government besides FAFSA? What kind of help can they offer to Deferred Action for Child Arrival eligible students? Students need better options to afford school, and our president needs to promote debt-free college.
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