UK children would rather grow up to be YouTubers than go to space, poll finds

Sarah Young

There was once a time when the height of ambition for many children was to be fireman, police officer or even an astronaut.

But now, in the age of Generation Influencer, it seems youngsters have other ideas as a third of young Britons and Americans want to be vloggers, new research reveals.

To honour the 50th anniversary of the historic Apollo 11 Moon Landing on 16 July in 1969, the Lego Group conducted a survey of children regarding their thoughts on space exploration.

The poll asked 3,000 children aged eight to 12 to choose from a list of five professions to answer which they would prefer to be when they grew up, including an astronaut, musician, professional athlete, teacher, or vlogger/YouTuber.

The results showed British and American children were three times as likely (30 per cent) to want to be YouTubers or vloggers as astronauts (11 per cent) when they grow up.

The preference to become a vlogger was followed by teacher (25 per cent), professional athlete (21 per cent) and musician (18 per cent).

By contrast, children in China showed a clear preference for being an astronaut over any other potential profession with 56 per cent saying they would like to be the next person in space.

This was followed by teacher (52 per cent), musician (47 per cent) and professional athlete (37 per cent) with vlogger/YouTuber coming last (18 per cent).

Despite British and American children not wanting to pursue a career in space, the survey did reveal that the majority are interested in space exploration (86 per cent), with 90 per cent stating they would like to learn more.

“We are thrilled that children continue to be interested in space exploration and can't wait to witness their 'small steps' and 'giant leaps' in decades to come,” said Michael McNally, senior director of brand relations, LEGO Systems, Inc.

In 2018, a similar study conducted by telecommunications services provider O2 found that a growing number of children are aiming for careers in technology.

The study of 2,000 parents and 2,000 children aged five to 16 found that the majority of British children are intent on pursuing jobs such as vloggers (30 per cent), animators (15 per cent) and software developers (14 per cent).