"Speak Out" is an expression of opinion from the Editorial Board of WBTV, and is presented by General Manager, Nick Simonette.
Here's an alarming statistic: 20% of all college students entering their freshman year believe they will choose science as a major, but only 7% will actually follow through.
So what's the turn-off?
It seems that once students actually start doing the course work – and are tested on it – many opt out due to poor grades and disappointment in their own performance.
Early findings point to a lack of preparedness at the middle and high school level.
The number of science and engineering graduates in the U. S. is far below that of China and Japan.
And on various math and science tests, American students have fallen below those of Israel, Australia and Russia, to name just a few.
We are, however, encouraged that more and more STEM schools are popping up.
STEM stands for Science-Technology-Engineering and Math.
And they're enticing students at an early age with the wonders of math and science.
Our country can't tolerate a situation in which its students enter college with real enthusiasm for science, only to discover they aren't up to it.
The nation's economy relies on a steady infusion of scientific talent, and many young Americans will find good jobs.
But only if they are equipped with the tools to take science seriously.
Tell us what YOU think. SpeakOut@wbtv.com.