Communication changes with age

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By JAKE DAY, Staff Reporter |

According to national surveys, members of older generations often see post-millennials and millennials as poor communicators. Some Amarillo College students and instructors, however, disagree with this common condemnation of young people’s communication skills. 

“Everything about communication has evolved so far that the way younger generations communicate isn’t bad, but it is different,” Courtney Milleson, an assistant professor of speech, said. “Students now are bombarded with so many messages now, I think we have to be more selective of the messages we allow ourselves to hear.”

Some students said their biggest problem is coping with distractions. “I wish I was better at talking while multitasking and vice versa,” Eric Gallegos, a criminal justice major, said. He said he sees himself as a decent communicator, but knows he has room to improve.

Alexis Sopha, an environmental engineering major, said she often feels anxious when talking to people. “I just feel like I have to constantly have something to say,” Sopha said.

Other students said they experience similar anxiety. Ashley Benderman, an engineering major, said she does not consider herself a good communicator.  

“I usually try to avoid conversation,” Benderman said. “If I get too worried about how I’m sounding in a conversation, I’ll just stop talking.”

Some instructors said that millennial communication problems stem from a need to re-evaluate their priorities. “We are so accessible now, 24/7, and that’s too much,” Jacqueline Llewellyn, a speech instructor, said. “It adds stress that is completely unnecessary to our lives. We can still be accessible without giving ourselves away all of the time.”

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