Encouraging Girls To Pursue STEM Careers

By Bridget Balch
Houston Chronicle

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) In an effort to bring more balance to gender representation, schools and a number of education-focused organizations across the nation have used research to develop strategies to engage young girls in STEM, particularly in the preteen years, when girls tend to move away from STEM.

Houston Chronicle

When Romeesa Khan signed up to take a computer science class her freshman year at Terry High School in Rosenberg, she was the only girl in the class.

Khan had always been fascinated by science, straying from her older sister’s inclination toward the arts.

She decorated her childhood bedroom with NASA paraphernalia and watched Animal Planet after school.

It wasn’t until she was older that she realized the discrepancy in the numbers of boys and girls in her science and technology camps and classes.

“It was kind of troubling seeing there weren’t as many females,” Khan said.

Khan’s observation is reflective of nationwide figures that show that women are statistically underrepresented in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields.

While women made up about half of the U.S. college-educated workforce in 2013, only 29 percent of the science and engineering workforce was female, according to the National Science Foundation.

It’s a trend that appears to be shifting as educators place more of an emphasis on encouraging girls to pursue an interest in STEM courses.

Of the 30 valedictorians and salutatorians who graduated from Fort Bend County’s two largest school districts this year, nearly two-thirds of them were young women intending to pursue a career in a STEM field — including Khan.

In an effort to bring more balance to gender representation, schools and a number of education-focused organizations across the nation have used research to develop strategies to engage young girls in STEM, particularly in the preteen years, when girls tend to move away from STEM.

Related News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *