Monday, March 22, 2010

Failing Grades for Attracting Women and Minorities into STEM

Several new reports just released show the trend to attract women and minorities into the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (often designated by the acronym STEM) remains dismal. Here are links to read more about two recently released reports.

Why So Few? AAUW Report

There's a lot to chew over in these two articles. Take some time to read them and to check some of the links to other resources contained within the articles. As educators, we need to be concerned about stereotypes we create and how our attitudes influence the students in our classrooms. What can we do to serve as strong role models to encourage students to pursue interests and eventual careers in the fields represented by STEM, areas in which more and more professionals will be needed in the future to sustain our growth as a world leader? What is our responsibility to encourage students in general to pursue careers in these fields and to start preparing them for such futures in grades as early as the elementary school?

President Obama has already proposed several steps to support STEM. (See "Obama Unveils Plan to Bolster STEM," Jan. 2010.)

So much of the future of our country rests in nurturing young people's interests in the STEM fields. What is your response to the recent reports about our failings as educators to support and nurture young people's interests in the STEM areas? Are the solutions offered in the articles and the related reports feasible? What do you see as solutions?

photo credit: cover from report obtained at

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