Facts and figures about STEM Education in the U.S.

The following information is from WRALTechwire.

Facts and figures about STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) as compiled by the North Carolina Stem Community Collaborative:

• By 2014, there are expected to be 2 million jobs created in STEM-related fields (Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)

• Concern about America’s ability to be competitive in the global economy has led to a number of calls to action to strengthen the pipeline into these fields (National Academy of Sciences, Committee on Science, Engineering & Public Policy, 2007; U.S. Government Accountability Office, 2006; U.S. Department of Education, 2006).

• Forty percent (40%) of all students test at below basic math level; 70% African Americans and 3/5 Latinos test below math level (2005 National Assessment of Education Progress)

• Fifty percent (50%) of all students test at below basic science level; 4/5 African Americans and 7/10 Latinos below basic science level (Ibid)

• The number of engineering degrees awarded in the United States is down 20% from the peak year of 1985. (Tapping America’s Potential; http://www.tap2015.org)

• Although U.S. fourth graders score well against international competition, they fall near the bottom or dead last by the time they are 12th graders in mathematics and science, respectively. (Ibid)

• More than 50% of all engineering doctorial degrees awarded by U.S. engineering colleges are to individuals ineligible for the security clearances required for most defense industrial base jobs (Ibid)

• In 2001, there were slightly more than 4 million 9th graders. Four years later, 2.8 million graduated and 1.9 million went on to two and four year college; only 1.3 million were actually ready for college work. Fewer than 300,000 are majoring in STEM fields and only about 167,000 are expected to be STEM college graduates by 2011. (National Center for Education Statistics; Digest of Education Statistics)

Copyright 2012 WRAL Tech Wire. All rights reserved.

While many schools are trying to combat these trends, they are frightening statistics and these trends will not be turned around overnight. Our children and grandchildren will need to understand this planet if they are going to make the right decisions and tough choices that will be needed to adapt to the challenges of this century.

It is studies like these that get me excited about Science Camps of America.
We will be a part of the solution.