Magazine article USA TODAY

Boys' Interest in STEM Declining

Magazine article USA TODAY

Boys' Interest in STEM Declining

Article excerpt

In just one year after first being surveyed, high school age teens' ambitions have shifted further away from careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) and the arts, maintains research conducted on behalf of Junior Achievement USA, Colorado Springs, Colo., and Ernst &Young, Richmond, Va. In addition, more 13- to 17-year-old students are expecting to take out loans to help pay for college.

* In 2018, 24% of boys want a STEM career, down from 36% in 2017; girls' interest remains unchanged at 11%, year-over-year.

* Among girls and boys, desires for careers in the arts dropped from 18% to 13%.

* The percentage of teens expecting to take out a student loan increased from 33% to 45%.

Career choices that have risen in popularity include the medical and dental fields, as well as public service, illustrating that what kids find most appealing about their dream job is that they are "good at it" and can help people.

According to students, their parents still hold the top spot in terms of who or what influences their choice of a dream job. Parents' influence, in fact, increased from 19% to 28% since last year. Societal influences, such as social media, declined from 15% to eight percent. Other sources of inspiration include extra-curricular activities teachers, courses, and volunteering. …

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