Friday, February 10, 2012

STEM - Scientists, Technologists, Engineers, and Mathematicians

In his Feb 2012 blog, in A View From The Q, ASQ CEO Paul Borawski discusses the need for students to enter the STEM -Science Technology, Engineer and Mathematics professions. He discussed the fact that his daughter is visiting colleges in anticipation of a fall entry into an Engineering program. Paul, first of all congratulations on your daughters upcoming graduation and her acceptances to her chosen institutions of higher learning for the nobel profession of Engineering. Second, I applaud you as a parent for helping her see the future at such a young age and guiding her to realize that there is more to life than Facebook and YouTube!

Okay, that last line was kind of personal on my part. I, too, have a daughter graduating this June with eyes toward a college career. She has applied to and been accepted at numerous schools for Biology (we too are looking at the sciences). And, even though her face is glued to her Facebook page or watching YouTube videos as often as she is in her books she is achieving high honors in school and working diligently toward fulfilling our hopes for her successful future.

While I don't have a vast sampling plan I can look at the Hendrick Hudson (HenHud) High School (HHHS), Montrose, NY Class of 2012 as a benchmark of the future. At least 4 of my daughters closest friends applied for Engineering and Science related programs, 2 or 3 are looking at Film, several applied for general Business and others are undecided.

So this benchmarked sample indicates to me that approximately 30% of the graduating population is looking into STEM opportunities.

All I ask is that statisticians not attack my sampling plan nor my rash pronouncement of the future based on the limited sample size.

Yesterday my son told me his proposed class list for his Jr year at HHHS. While he chooses not to take Physics (a New York State regents track course) he is looking at several AP sciences, AP Stats and of course AP Calculus (this is an 'of course' because his girfriend's mom is the AP Calc teacher!). So there is hope for another generation of science / math type within my family.

Having so many teens around us that are looking at the sciences is encouraging to me. Maybe our kids see the future and the future is the US will once again become a mecca of manufacturing! We can only hope!

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