Women face at least two ongoing educational obstacles. First, there is substantial evidence that girls continue to get streamed out of STEM programs, if not in middle or high school, at least by the time they arrive in university. Indeed, most computer science and engineering programs have yet to tip the 20% mark when it comes to graduating women.
Over the next decade, an estimated 2 million manufacturing jobs in the U.S. will go unfilled. A 2014 study by Deloitte reports that the manufacturing skills gap will drive this deficit. According to the same study, about 70 percent of manufacturing CEOs say their workforce currently lacks technology, computer, basic technical and problem solving skills, while 78 percent said these shortcomings will hamper technological growth in U.S.
Through a joint initiative by Jobs for the Future (JFF) and Persistence Plus, approximately 10,000 students at four leading community colleges in the United States are receiving personalized text message "nudges" that keep them on the path toward college completion and STEM success. A randomized trial this past summer with nearly 2,000 students showed that STEM students who received the nudges returned for the 2017 fall semester at a rate 10 percentage points higher than a control group of students who did not receive nudges. These are very promising results.
College students pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) are confident about their job prospects. In fact, in a recent survey, they expressed more confidence than their peers who are pursuing degrees in the liberal arts, business or public service.
In analyzing data from the Texas Education Research Center, SWE researchers found that less than 4 percent of female students chose engineering or computer science (ECS) majors compared to nearly 20 percent of men across two- and four-year institutions in the state. Evidence of a slight decrease in ECS major declarations among women comes despite more women than men enrolling in college each year.
In years past, some coding toys seemed too complex, too boring, too expensive. But this year gives me hope that we’re coming a long way in terms of getting kids excited about STEM skills and coding basics, and giving them plenty of options to find the one that best appeals to them. Here, just a few favorites.
The greatest influence on the career ambitions of today’s children isn’t their teachers, parents, books, or even self-discovered passions. Instead, their ambitions are being primarily shaped by television, movies, and YouTube. Good news: Over half of girls say they want a career in STEM fields. Bad news: Kid’s entertainment is still very gendered.
More than three-quarters of women who work in STEM fields at male-dominated workplaces report experiencing at least one type of gender discrimination, ranging from being turned down for a job to making less than a man for the same work. Reports of discrimination are highest among women with advanced degrees and those who work with computers.
Employment in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) occupations has grown 79% since 1990, from 9.7 million to 17.3 million, outpacing overall U.S. job growth. There’s no single standard for which jobs count as STEM, and this may contribute to a number of misperceptions about who works in STEM and the difference that having a STEM-related degree can make in workers’ pocketbooks.
Teaching computer science in K-12 schools -- and even making it a curriculum requirement -- is not just a lofty idea anymore. Schools around the country really began to embrace computer science in 2017, with a number of states moving forward with legislation to make it a mandatory subject. Advocates who have long been fighting for change said the hard work is finally paying off, and more achievements are ahead in 2018.