About Shift

Shift speaks: Our young approach to reporting

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We are a new generation confronting an uncertain future. The decisions we make in our own lives will, in turn, shape our culture.

Whether we are called Millennials, Generation Y or Echo Boomers, the choices we make now will determine the course of our lives and how we will deal with the issues that define us: identity, career, community, relationships.

As we enter adulthood, we are entering a world that is also changing. The population is steadily growing. Mexican-Americans, Korean-Americans, Indian-Americans and Americans of every other ethnicity are making their marks on society. Cultural differences often make our decisions difficult to navigate, and many young Americans must tread the careful line between embracing the future and holding on to their roots.

But regardless of our backgrounds, we are all facing critical questions: Can we pursue our dreams and stay financially afloat? How do we balance work and life? Can we find our life’s partners in different cultures? How can we transform our world for the better? What happens when our parents’ values differ from our own? And what place, if any, does religion have in all this?

As a group of 13 graduate fellows working at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, we will explore how young people all over the country are dealing with these decisions. Our project is called News 21, and through our reporting we will tell the stories of young Americans as they begin to control their futures, alter their worlds and enter on-their-own adult lives.

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