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Katie Comments | Winter is coming...

With the ongoing cost of living crisis and possible blackouts this upcoming winter, are Generation Z up to the test?

By Katie Sowerby, Opinion Columnist

With the ongoing cost of living crisis and possible blackouts this upcoming winter, are Generation Z up to the test?

Generation Z are stereotyped as over-sensitive, technology-obsessed snowflakes. We have often been classed as the generation who have never had it so easy. So, with this growing, unsettling climate, along with the cost-of-living crisis and possible blackouts – will this break or make our generation?

Before starting this article, I would like to acknowledge that I know not all students are ‘Gen Z’, however, the majority are. Even if you are a mature student there are probably times you feel a part of Gen Z due to our self-deprecating sense of humour reflected on pages like Bristruth.

Despite the National Grid warning that blackouts remain an ‘unlikely’ scenario. This is an ongoing fear in many of Gen Z’s minds. Some could believe this is due to our heavily tech-dependent lifestyle.

However, before older generations criticise us and refer to how ‘back in their day’ they were not hooked to a screen. It does need to be remembered that we did not pick this lifestyle we did not invent the smartphone, tablet or tv. These screens that our generation are so addicted to are items that we have been brought up to be dependent on. For instance, one of my early memories from school was being told the importance of learning to touch type and how this was the future.

All the institutions we are a part of have turned to technology.

We are dependent on technology, as are other generations. The fear of possible blackouts for students is what effect they will have on our education. Our education has already been hugely disrupted by Covid 19 and strikes with little to no amenities to make this already difficult period easier.

Our entire lives are dependent on energy suppliers – so of course, we are scared. Students are already struggling to get by with the cost-of-living crisis. According to the Nationwide Building Society of 1,000 students, 66 per cent were either struggling to pay their bills or unable to meet their rent.

This terrifying statistic emphasises how the cost-of-living crisis is already having a horrific effect on students. With the new fear of blackouts, which could cause university closures, students are terrified and have every right to be.

Repeatedly, students are being affected with little to no support from the government. However, despite everyone believing Gen Z to be softies, in reality it is quite the opposite.

Again and again, we have been tested and challenged and we have got through each difficult period with new memes and TikToks showcasing our generation’s brilliant self-deprecating sense of humour.

Our university experience has in no way been an easy ride, and I wish all students the very best in the next few months.

Featured Image: Courtesy of Katie Sowerby