Abstract

For this research project, the goal is to establish a group of common influences as to why students choose to enter a STEM field for both a college major and for their choice of career. Currently, the US is in a unique situation, STEM related jobs are set to greatly increase in the coming years, however, STEM participation has fallen to an all-time low. To combat this issue, it is important to identify ways that we can influence students to be more interested in the pursuit of STEM. To do this, current research on this subject was used to establish a baseline, concentrating on different aspects that must be focused on to accomplish our goal. Students (meaning all students), female students, and students of racial minorities must be focused on as separate groups to improve both the quantity and diversity of STEM professionals. This was followed by a survey of EKU STEM students, so that a baseline could be established for the current situation at EKU. The survey results showed that EKU doing far better than average when it comes to female STEM students. However, the amount of racial diversity at EKU is lacking, and this is the area that needs to be focused on in the coming years going forward.

Semester/Year of Award

Spring 2017

Mentor

Martin L. Brock

Department/Professional Affiliation

Chemistry

Access Options

Restricted Access Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars

Department

Chemistry

IRB Approval Number (if applicable)

000368

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