The Importance Of STEM Careers

1581 Words 7 Pages
The STEM careers have the potential to reduce gender and racial salary gaps and occupational standing. STEM careers are seen as higher status with higher pay than other fields, which also keeps STEM professionals in secure and high paying jobs (Rothwell, 2013). While there has been a documented current increase in females and minorities choosing to pursue these jobs, they also continue to be underrepresented in the STEM field. There are many factors that affect these students’ choice to pursue a career in STEM. Some of these factors include the early educational experience, student’s background characteristics, messages from surrounding social system the self-efficacy, and their engagement. Other factors which have been proven inaccurate …show more content…
Girls and women face systematic messages that STEM success is mismatched with female gender roles. Despite high-level abilities in mathematics and science, many gifted young women seem to be more attracted to majors such as biology, medicine, or psychology, which leads to helping occupations, than to physics, mathematics, or engineering (Buccheri et. al., 2011). Young female adolescents often are faced with the conflict between their gender identity and their pursuit of a STEM career. Girls are also discouraged from pursuing the advanced math and science by their parents and teachers. Gender roles and stereotypes that begin at home are reinforced in the learning environment, contributing to girls’ diminishing interest and achievement in math and science (Perry et. all, 2012). Such negative connotations can influence their self-efficacy, their performance in the subjects, interest in pursuing STEM field careers, and even their educational …show more content…
Females and minorities receive explicit and implicit messages from parents, teachers, and peers. This along with individual characteristics shape the science engagement. Persisting in STEM studies can also be linked to parental support: Some studies illustrate that mathematic abilities can be negatively influenced by parent gender-role attitudes (Buschor et. all, 2014). Additionally, every single culture has a set of expectations of how they should be and act for their youth based on their sex and minorities. A middle schoolers career goals start with “personal inputs” such as sex or ethnicity and their “background” which includes factors like parental advice and media messages (Sharpio et. all, 2015). These also open opportunities in certain careers and put constraints on others. By the time a student enters middle school they have spent over seven thousand hours in schools. Thus, teachers and peers become crucial for understanding the development of children’s STEM motivational beliefs. Individual teachers provide learning experiences that can foster positive or negative outcome expectations and interests (Sharpio et. all, 2015). Having a teacher’s support may be important for the students’ engagement in the STEM field. Finally, peers can affect if an adolescent chooses a STEM career. In-group peers/experts may not be seen as having actually “achieved” by other peers

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