Retention of Stem Majors
According to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, the United States will need approximately 1 million more STEM professionals than are projected to graduate over the next decade. Achieving this ambitious increase will require a concerted focus on the retention of STEM majors during the initial years of college because, today:
Fewer than 40 percent of engineering and science students who enter college intending to major in a STEM field complete a STEM degree.
That number increases to as much as 60 percent when pre-medical students, who typically have the strongest SAT scores and high school science preparation are included. (NY Times)
Recent reports also indicate that middle and high school students are having most of the fun with STEM building robots, testing reactions and theories and such. However, once they are off to college they are overwhelmed with demanding coursework in calculus, physics and chemistry, and then many lose interest.
“STEM Education is a hot topic in the country right now with a lot of the focus on K-12, STEM careers and the long term needs in STEM Education. However, one area in which we can see vast and accelerated improvements is by figuring out how to keep the enthusiasm for STEM being built in the lower grades from dissipating once the students get to college” says Andrea Peterson, CEO and Founder of STEM University.
So far, the feedback about STEM University has been positive. “We are currently talking to engineers, technology experts, industry leaders and professional organizations about forging partnerships, and creating student activities that will focus on retention because its not something we can do alone” she added.
STEM University’s brand purpose is to make daily life easier for STEM students. “Our goal is to help meet immediate needs coupled with occasional rewards for academic achievements explains Peterson. The intent is to take some of the pressure off, allowing more of the students focus to remain on school or improving in a particular subject of study.”
In an effort to build momentum for the fall launch of the STEM University clothing collection, the label is kicking things off with its first social media campaign, #istressless which includes online events and contests around test-taking season to help students cope with the pressures during finals.
To learn more about #iSTRESSLESS and STEM University visit www.stemuniversity.com.