Mission for today's youths

Updated: 2014-05-05 07:48

(China Daily)

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THE FUTURE OF A NATION DEPENDS ON THE quality of its young people.

This explains why President Xi Jinping visited Peking University on Sunday, Chinese Youth Day, and told the students to have lofty ideals and faith in the future so that they may contribute to the realization of the Chinese Dream.

Peking University is the symbol of the May Fourth Movement in 1919, which was characterized by science and democracy, as well as the emancipation of the mind for a better future.

Chinese youths today enjoy much better conditions for receiving higher education than their parents and grandparents, and the number of university students on campus amounts to more than 25 million. And about 35 percent of high school graduates have the opportunity of entering a university.

Yet, they also face more temptations and challenges than their counterparts in the past.

Youths more than 90 years ago broke the shackles of Confucian ideas and embraced new ways of thinking on science and democracy. What youths today need is an independent way of thinking that can help them make decisions on their own and have a clear understanding of what they want to be and can be in the future, which may possibly prove contrary to what their parents expect of them.

They need to develop a strong will to resist the values of money worship and material enjoyment in their efforts to pursue their ideals, and they need to maintain the will to overcome the difficulties they will meet in their future careers. They also need to develop a strong sense of responsibility, which will enable them to do a good job whatever they do in the future.

The number of applicants for government employees grew to more than 1 million in 2013, but the number dropped this year after tighter control on the extra gray income civil servants could obtain through various channels and the fight against corruption intensified.

This suggests that some do not necessarily desire to be government employees but rather they covet the benefits such a job may bring them.

Such youths with their eyes only on the immediate interests a job may bring cannot be expected to have a strong sense of responsibility and dedication no matter what they do. Only youths who care about the future of the nation can be trusted with the mission of realizing the Chinese Dream.