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Posted by Nancy E. Klemmer
on Mar 07, 2014
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What millennials love about Rotary
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian If there is one absolute truth about millennials, it is this: Anyone who says there is an absolute truth about millennials risks being subjected to their collective eye roll. Millennials are individuals, and fiercely so. According to the Pew Research Center, most of them don’t even like being called “millennials,” let alone hearing generalizations about their shared attitudes and behaviors. Case in point: Christa Papavasiliou, 31, recoils at the notion that older folks see her generation as a bunch of selfie-snapping smartphone addicts. “I’m the...
Crisis at the doorstep
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian More than a million refugees from Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan streamed into the European Union last year. Most entered via Greece after a harrowing raft trip across the Aegean Sea from Turkey. Once there, they made their way north, often on foot, traveling more than 1,000 miles through the rugged mountains of the Balkan countries toward Germany. That was the uncertain odyssey facing Muhammad Mallah Hamza, a 26-year-old ethnic Kurd, in late 2014 when he decided to leave his native Syria. The trip would lead the recent college graduate to a picturesque...
What's next for Rotary?
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian Demographic change is a drama in slow motion. It unfolds incrementally, tick by tock, but it transforms societies in fundamental ways – and the America of the early 21st century is undergoing two such dramas at the same time. Our population is en route to becoming majority nonwhite at the same time a record share of us (like me) is going gray. Either trend by itself would be the dominant demographic story of its era. The fact that they’re unfolding simultaneously has created giant generation gaps. The United States is at a moment in its history when...
Culture: Consuming passions
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian A friend recently said something to me that was shocking, maybe even a little subversive. She could afford to retire now, she said, because of this amazing reality: “I don’t need to buy anything more. I have everything I need.” Was this America, home of the free parking with purchase and the brave doorbuster shoppers? The land whose fruited plains are dotted with storage lockers and Container Stores for all our excess stuff? My friend maintained her love of country but held firm. She has enough clothes; her house is fully furnished. She is done. And, at...
Travel: Strange trips
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian Over the years, I have regurgitated my share of dodgy dishes eaten on the road. I have had my appendix removed in a Tanzanian hospital. I have watched helplessly, imagining the discovery of my shriveled corpse, as my blood pooled on the floor of a guesthouse room in Borneo after I pulled a leech off my ankle. I know that the last place you want to end up while traveling is in the hospital. Yet, apart from the usual bodily afflictions that come with travel, even stranger maladies prey on our minds when we are abroad. Less well understood than their...