The ‘Making Sure Tomorrow Works’ study by City & Guilds Centre for Skills Development, asked 1544 14 to 20 year olds teenagers who they are most impressed by.
When asked who they admire for their achievements, J.K. Rowling came out on top with 53%, closely followed by Richard Branson (50%) and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg (37%). The results come in advance of The Skills Show, the UK’s biggest skills and careers event, which showcases the skills young people need to achieve their ambitions.
By contrast, those best known for their celebrity status, including reality TV personalities, pop stars and models, failed to impress today’s youngsters. Just 3% of those surveyed said they admired Kate Moss, followed by Kim Kardashian (4%), and Justin Beiber (8%).
The public figures identified as top role models by young people appear to be driving a trend when it comes to young people’s own career goals. Over a third (34%) of 18 to 20 year olds said they see themselves as self-employed or having started their own company ten years from now. It is clear that even today’s challenging economic climate is not deterring the Richard Branson’s of the future from their entrepreneurial ambitions.
Russell Pocock, Head of Learner Engagement, City & Guilds said: “The results of the study show a welcome departure from the common assumption that teenagers today only aspire to celebrity status and quick fame. Instead, what has been revealed here is a picture of a balanced and mature generation who understand the importance of talent, hard work and good values in achieving career success. That’s why City & Guilds is supporting The Skills Show – an annual event to showcase and celebrate skilled professions – so we can enable young people to recognise opportunities, inspire them to develop the skills they need to succeed, and help them shape their tomorrow.”