White House asks community to solve the problem of US students not taking Science with enthusiasm as their global peers
On Tuesday May 11th the White House held a briefing for a group of 150 mostly local technology companies, non-profits , associations and others interested in knowing more about the White House initiative the President’s Educate to Innovate campaign. The campaign’s goal is to improve the participation and performance of America’s students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Greg Nelson
According to the White House website
This campaign will include efforts not only from the Federal Government but also from leading companies, foundations, non-profits, and science and engineering societies to work with young people across America to excel in science and math.
In January 2009 the Scientific American reported
“85 percent of kids surveyed by theLemelson–M.I.T. Invention Index, an annual survey that examines Americans' attitudes about innovation, said they were interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics”
“But nearly two-thirds polled said they may ultimately pursue other professions because they don’t have a mentor or understand what's involved in a science, math or engineering career.”
One the measures determining the performance the US students is from a Department of Education sponsored Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) which is a system of international assessments that measures 15-year-olds’ performance in reading literacy,
mathematics literacy, and science literacy every 3 years. The latest assessment taken in 2009 will be available in Dec 2010 ( That’s a long time in the Internet age). The report states “U.S. students scored lower on science literacy than their peers in 16 of the other 29 OECD jurisdictions”
The situation the country is facing which needs programs like STEM to succeed is suitably put in the words of Charlie Boden Former NASA Astronaut and current Administrator of NASA
There is a crisis in the United States that stems from the gap between the nation’s growing need for scientists, engineers, and other technically skilled workers, and our supply. This crisis in education, if not resolved, will contribute to future declines in qualified employees to meet demands in critical career fields that affect U.S. global competitiveness and the national economy. However, seeing the engagement and enthusiasm of those fifth grade students, I am hopeful that given the opportunity, our youth shall be inspired and motivated to consider STEM careers.
Shashi Bellamkonda is Director – Social Media & Social Media Swami of Network Solutions aShashi is a regular contributor to the DC Examiner and Tech Cocktail. This article contains the opinions and observations of the author and may not necessarily reflect those of Network Solutions or its clients or partners.
Article first published on http://readythoughts.blogspot.com