Young people today have weathered the Great Recession, the birth of the smartphone and the aftereffects of globalization.
And their attitudes toward work reflect those experiences, according to new research by the National Society of High School Scholars, an international academic honor association.
Some 16,000 high-achieving college and high school students were interviewed this spring.
There are more than 60 million members of Gen Z, those born between 1996 and 2004, and they will soon be flooding the workforce.
Expectations for their jobs are high, the research found.
More than 75 percent of them anticipate going to graduate school and want to be working in a related and meaningful field within six months of graduation.
They prioritize a healthy work-life balance and want to be fulfilled when they are on the job.
The study warns that employers might find it difficult to realize this generation's idealism in the office.