Students protesting in front of White HouseActivism presents one of the ways in which students can gain important life skills. This is according to a study published in January by the journal of Child Development. From the findings of the study, students who engaged in activism and voting activities in their youth ended up having higher incomes as opposed to those who did not take part in such activities.

Insight Into How the Study Was Carried Out

To improve the scoop of the study, about 1000 youth from diverse racial, ethnic, and economic backgrounds were the test subjects. A technical team of researchers from Wake Forest school of medicine, Fordham and the University of Massachusetts conducted the research majoring on the political and social engagements of youth and the impact on their finances and way of life in the future.

In light of their findings, Parissa Ballard, the study’s lead author was quick to point out that activism has an impact on young people’s lives and can greatly influence how they turn out in the future. The findings have came at an opportune time, when American students were planning on a National School Walkout. This planned demonstration elicited mixed reactions from the members of the public and students.

Reasons For The Planned National School Walkout

Following the horrific school shooting that claimed the lives of 17 students in Parkland, Florida, many students organized to stage a protest to advocate for gun control as a measure of preventing such incidents in future. The march also aims at honoring those who lost their lives during the incident.

For students that engaged in the walkout, it is important to understand that engaging in such activities will not have the same benefit on all the young people. Voting and volunteering among the youth however has shown a decrease in the level of depression, as well as an increase in the probability of making wiser health decisions.

The Potential Cons of Activism

According to Dr Ballard, voting and volunteering enjoy social and cultural support as they are deemed helpful. Activism, on the other hand, is viewed differently.

Researchers also link activism to higher levels of risky behavior such as excessive drug abuse and excessive consumption of fast foods by youths between 24 and 32 years. This was attributed to two reasons according to the authors.

1. It is the norm for activism to be a risk-taking venture making people who engage in activism more likely to engage in other risky activities.

2. Constant discouragement in their ventures has a negative impact and can make them turn to drugs and other dangerous habits

Dr Ballard suggests that young people should be taught to have reasonable expectations. Students should be encouraged to engage in activism activities that have a genuine cause and in a manner that does not cause any conflict.

Our private tutors are teachers in classrooms throughout California. One thing that we can all agree on, is that our young people need healthy outlets with which to process the feelings that these tragic incidents create.

Read more about the study we discussed in this blog post.