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Women in science: STEM taking root

As demands for advances in engineering and science grow, women are increasingly interested in joining those fields.

As demands for advances in engineering and science grow, women are increasingly interested in joining those fields.



According to the National Science Foundation, the amount of women engaging in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, has grown significantly since the 1970s. Fewer than 78,000 women were enrolled as graduate students in science and engineering in 1977 — compared with nearly 232,000 in 2008.



Still, men overwhelmingly dominate STEM fields. So what is preventing women from fully taking the field by storm?



One theory is that young girls have traditionally been taught that math and science are for boys, while they should focus more on literature and writing.



Many women in STEM professions say more women need to pursue careers in these fields. History is probably a good indicator that it’s just a matter of time. After all, it wasn’t long ago that you wouldn’t see a woman’s name on a ballot for a major election or listed as CEO of a Fortune 500 company.



It might not be long before they become front and center in the world of math and science, too.

 
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