Today is a big day—a new blog on my new website lindamornell.com! The first of weekly Tuesday morning thoughts on the state of today’s adolescents. As founder of Summer Search and promoter of leadership development in low-income adolescents for the last 25 years I am finding there is more to say on this age group than ever before.
The path to adulthood has never been an easy one. But in the decade of helicoptering and booking kids up, teenagers are no longer allowed the space and environment to find identity, develop passion and experience failure. The rush towards external achievement – the perfect grades, scores, and extensive resume of extracurricular activities and sports — has created a scarcity mentality.
There are too few spots in top schools, too few opportunities waiting for only the most capable students. Those few that do achieve all the right things, gain access. But then what? In the past five years there has been a worrisome 50% increase in emergency calls to counseling services from those students at top private colleges and public universities.
We are clearly in a crisis. We have forgotten the primary goal for all adolescents—to discover who they are….to develop an internalized identity independent of external achievement. Hence my weekly blog will focus on helping kids find their voice through going for hard. Hopefully you will add your voice along the way. Catch you next Tuesday!!