MANILA - Majority of Filipino millennials want to be successful in their own businesses, according to an online survey conducted by the Far Eastern University (FEU), in cooperation with eight other universities.
The College Freshmen Survey, conducted by the FEU Policy Center in 2015, showed that 55 percent of the 4,325 respondents indicated success in owning their business as the value that most appeals to them.
The respondents were freshmen students aged 16 to 18 years old from the FEU, Adamson University, Baliuag University, Centro Escolar University, Emilio Aguinaldo College, Jose Rizal University, Mapua Institute of Technology, National University, and Philippine Women's University.
Millennials are those born between 1982 and early 2000s. They operate on the philosophies of FOMO (fear of missing out), and YOLO (you only live once).
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According to the survey, millennials also have high educational aspirations, as about two-thirds of the respondents plan to pursue a postgraduate degree, or a degree in law or medicine.
Almost two-thirds (74.3 percent) also intend to work abroad, mainly because of the high pay.
They also tend to be concerned with the environment, with 46.4 percent citing "adopting green practices to protect the environment" as another appealing value to them.
They also indicated raising a family (44.5 percent) as an essential life goal.
"In its initial iteration, the survey has already given some very thought-provoking insights into what Filipino millennials are all about," said FEU president Dr. Michael Alba, who is also the survey's lead proponent.
"What's even more interesting is how their opinions, beliefs and values may be correlated to their profiles—the environment they live in, economic status, family background, high school education, and their own circle of influencers. Cumulatively, this research will help us find out how their beliefs may change or be reinforced as they go through college, one of the last major formative events in a person's life," Alba said.
The 4,325 respondents in the study were profiled based on their high school backgrounds, the locations of their permanent residence, their parents' marital, economic, and educational status, their living arrangements in college, the factors that determine their school of choice, their educational and work aspirations, the activities they most frequently or never engage in, and their life goals and what they want to get from their college education.
According to the survey, majority of the respondents are 2014 high school graduates (86.3 percent) and are willing to work part-time (73.1 percent).
Most (66.3 percent) live in owned quarters with parents as primary companions. Their primary means of financing (89.72 percent) are family resources. Nearly half of the respondents said their parents are college degree holders.
The millennial respondents have the following reasons for attending college: to get a good job after graduation (91.3 percent), to raise a good family (79.9 percent), to train in a specific career (76.9 percent), as a commitment to lifelong learning (75.2 percent), and to learn things that are personally interesting (75.1 percent).
Presented with statements on a range of topics, they strongly agreed with: "Hard work is the most important element of success in Philippine society" (66.8 percent) and "The death penalty should be reinstated in the Philippines" (35.8 percent).
They strongly disagreed, on the other hand, with: "Divorce should be legalized in the Philippines" (31.3 percent). Strong opinions on these statements suggest that the freshmen may be a conservative lot, the survey said.
The survey also showed that a big majority of the freshmen "frequently" connect with friends using social media (70.6 percent) and use the internet for research or homework (69.3 percent).
On the other hand, among the activities they said they did not engage in at all are: smoked cigarettes (89.3 percent), demonstrated for a cause (85.0 percent), skipped school or class (73.7 percent), plagiarized for a school project or assignment (60.5 percent), drank beer, wine, or liquor (57.7 percent), and cheated in a written test in class (51.6 percent).
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According to FEU, the study will progress throughout the millennials' academic years. Surveys with similar questions will be conducted on the same students during their sophomore, junior and senior years, the results of which shall be compared to provide indications on how millennials think.
"There is certainly a need for more studies that will allow us to understand the psyche of today's generation, so we give particular focus to our college freshmen who will eventually enter the workforce after four years. This survey is a good starting point, allowing us to better appreciate what values this generation holds dear, what they aspire for, and how universities, the government, the private sector and other stakeholders should respond given this information," Alba said.