Coming off of the Thanksgiving holiday full of family…it got me thinking. Now admittedly, maybe I’m the only weirdo that thinks about this kind of stuff, but I’m genuinely curious (and slightly concerned) about the potential for a generational gap in knowledge. There has been a plethora of research focusing on working dynamics of four complete and separate generations in the current workforce (Silents, Boomers, Gen X, Millennials). Yet, less exploration has been focused/directed towards familial technological communication.
Consider the following premises:
Our society (particularly younger generations) is more concerned with digital communication than the physical people in our literal world. Simultaneously, (and albeit stereotypically), the older generations are not as digitally connected, flashy, and tech-savvy. Therefore, will these groups continue to communicate beyond social niceties at familial gatherings? Or will the entire message be lost because it’s not transmitted in the flashiest way? This has the makings of a generational communications gap.
Yet, wisdom goes light years beyond media projection. Wisdom is far more than the transfer of information and the accumulation to data. We desperately cannot negate wisdom for the sake of technological relevance. This is akin to throwing the baby out with the bath water. Essentially this is a new version of the “ad hominem” fallacy. i.e. “you are not communicating in the most technologically relevant and current fashion, therefore, whatever you have to say will be outdated, old-fashioned and antiquated.”
As a society, we risk giving all deference to appearance over content in a very visible form (form>function). We’re slowly losing track of our history by being so enmeshed in the present. The newest and shiniest clouds out the truth of millenniums.
“Those who cannot remember the past, are condemned to repeat it.”
- George Santayana, Reason in Common Sense, The Life of Reason, Vol 1.
With college students returning home (for many after their first semester away) there will be adjustments and potentially growing pains for students and parents. The holidays tend to bring out the best and the drama in our families. Your student may need space to remember and connect with their friends and the life they just finished for the semester. This may mean retreating towards digital communication and the incredible ability to digitally connect and share life across the country and globe.
Yet also, encourage your students to engage with the family, and intentionally consider their interests. Just because they may be off in the corner staring at their phone doesn’t mean they’re necessarily disinterested. They may simply not know how to engage well socially in the flesh, particularly with older generations.
Maybe we haven’t been the best models on how to do this… perhaps a parent is the one in the corner, reading this on their smartphone. This street goes both ways. Invite. Invest. Engage. Give grace. Laugh. Play games. Pursue health and balance. Make yourself and your family more compelling than a digital device.
Dr. Kevin Grant
Assistant Dean, Student Development
Director of the Learning Center
Thursday, December 18, 2014
Location: Calvary Chapel
Friends and family of graduating undergraduates are invited to a special worship service in celebration of God's faithfulness in the lives of our graduating seniors.
Friday, December 19
Due to limited space during the Undergraduate Ceremony, tickets are required for seating inside Chase Gymnasium. Guests, please plan to arrive 1 to 1.5 hours before the ceremony as all seating will take place on a first-come, first served basis.
For more information about Commencement, please visit commencement.biola.edu.
YouTube star and Biola alumnus Zach King ('12), with the help of President Barry Corey, shows the amazing things you can do as a student at Biola. Watch the video here.
Finals week is December 15-19! Students should already be aware of their exam schedule, which was posted on their my.Biola class schedule and/or communicated by the professor. Biola does not offer rides to the airport or train station. Students are encouraged to post on the Classifieds ride share board on my.Biola, ask friends or roommates (offer to pay for gas!), or schedule a pick-up using an airport shuttle. Prime Time Shuttle and Super Shuttle make frequent visits and are familiar with campus.
You can encourage and bless your son or daughter during this intensive time of finals week and support Biola student ministries through participating in our Survival Sack project. The packages and encouragement notes will be delivered on Friday, December 12th. Order by Wednesday, December 10th. Parents, to by credit card, please call 562-903-4754. Have your message to your student(s) ready, and we will include on a personal card for them.
Again this year the Center for Christianity, Culture & the Arts is providing a free online Advent Devotional. Starting November 30th, you can join the Biola community in preparing your heart for the wonder of Christmas during the season of Advent. New posts will be shared starting Sunday, November 30th.