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How do you personally define the “American dream?” How do priorities like home ownership and access to higher education compare with your values? What will success look like for your future?
Not too many years ago, the "American dream” seemed to be a pretty uniform vision: landing a well-paying job, owning your own home and filling it with cool stuff, maybe even having a family and sending your kids to good schools and colleges.
But for many millennials, their goals don’t necessarily line up with this narrow definition of success. More than previous generations, young people today say they value travel and self-employment over material things like houses and cars. And while for immigrant families "making it" used to mean assimilating into American culture, many young first and second generation Americans are seeking to preserve their traditions, finding balance between old and new values.
Youth Radio reporter Kasey Saeturn is one of those millennials. Her family is from Laos, and is ethically Mien. Unlike her younger siblings, she has made an effort to learn to speak Mien even as she participates in a traditional American education. “I'm trying to pursue higher education, financial aid, and the American Dream,” she says. “And I'm trying to do all that, without losing the Mien ways.”