Last week I blogged about listening with purpose and how in 2014 we heard from our partners as well as young Iowans, ages 18 to 35. Well, we also listened to really young Iowans, elementary school age. We asked them what they thought the future would be like, and oh boy, they told us. Imagine flying cars and jet packs and travelling through time to give dinosaurs a second chance. On a more serious level they talked about becoming scientists, taking care of the environment, and embracing differences.
Now some of the things they predict may sound far-fetched to you (fish ham?), but I’m old enough to recall when a hand-held portable “communicator” was Star Trek science fiction and now most of us carry smart phones around, or when the idea of GPS-driven farm equipment would have been unthinkable, just to name a couple.
The point is — some things change and change rapidly and will keep changing as we watch the future unfold. We need to accept that, prepare for it, and yes, even figure out how to embrace it. And some things — like a simple desire that we all be kind to each other — never change. We’ll hang on to some of those no matter what comes our way.
So, here’s to the future. May Iowa’s children continue to inspire us with their dreams and wisdom, may we stay open to the possibilities, and may the squirrels never organize and attack. Iowa State University will be ready to serve as a lifelong partner — whatever the future holds. See you there.
P.S. You can follow me on Twitter @cathannkress.