STEM Graduates Quit Because The Material Is Difficult

STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Due to the difficulty of STEM degrees, it appears many students abandon the degrees in college. While this fact is not surprising, it is still concerning. Our country and world need more good people with STEM skills.

A STEM degree is not essential to becoming a data scientist, but many data scientists have STEM backgrounds. Thus, I thought this information fit well with the Data Science Education Week theme.

How do we convince students to not abandon the STEM degrees?

One solution is to put less emphasis on grades. Grades in STEM courses are typically the lowest on campus, and this causes some students to switch degree programs in order to get better grades. Second, tell young people about some of the cool STEM projects available. Lots of people in Science and Math work on really interesting projects. If you can, tell the world about your projects.

What are some other ways to keep students in STEM programs?

Below is a nice infographic with various numbers about STEM students.

Thanks to Online Engineering Degree for the infographic.


3 responses to “STEM Graduates Quit Because The Material Is Difficult”

  1. A Avatar

    “After Graduation, 43% of STEM graduates choose not to work in the field”
    Choose? Might be involuntary for most of them.–
    Here in a (very rich) town in Silicon valley, our children observe that their engineer-scientist parents have their jobs outsourced or at least are subject to the boom-and-bust cycle of the economy, and now and then ‘between projects’ (unemployed – or sent to early retirement, once over 50); but that guy who sold his internet company just before it went under (in the last bust ~2000) is set for life, as is the ‘financial management’ guy who skillfully sold mortgage-based securities to your parent’s pension fund, just before the bubble burst.–
    Once STEM has the job security and income of, say, medical doctors, there will be no problem attracting bright students to this field. Look at how hard the competition is to get into medical school. And nobody complains how hard biology is, as it is an important subject for med school admission.

    1. Ryan Swanstrom Avatar

      I agree the choice is probably not always voluntary.

Leave a Reply