STEM career interest declining among male teens; not at Kingman High

In a recent study done by the Junior Achievement of Arizona and Ernst and Young concluded that high school aged boys interest in STEM careers have gone down since last year. (Daily Miner file photo)

In a recent study done by the Junior Achievement of Arizona and Ernst and Young concluded that high school aged boys interest in STEM careers have gone down since last year. (Daily Miner file photo)

KINGMAN – Many high school seniors have graduated and are now starting their next steps in life going to college and eventually starting their career. For those still in high school, they have time to think about what they want to do for the rest of their lives. Many would like to join the medical field to become a doctor or dentist, but plenty of high school students are steering away from STEM careers.

In a recent study done by the Junior Achievement of Arizona and Ernst and Young concluded that high school aged boys interest in STEM careers have gone down since last year. Boys interested in STEM careers have gone from 36 percent to 24 percent. For girls it still remains at an 11 percent.

Though the national trend appears to show a decline, that’s not the case at Kingman High School. Its STEM program is comprised of mainly boys.

“(I) haven’t heard that information or seen a decline,” Rusty Moomey, KHS principal said in an email to the Daily Miner.

Classes offered to KHS students include engineering, physics, robotics and game design.

Katherine Cecala, Junior Achievement of Arizona president believes educators, parents, mentors and counselors need to continue to give students the skills necessary to be proficient in areas to advance.

“Teens today report they are leaning toward jobs that highlight their capabilities, as well as careers that offer altruistic outcomes,” she said.

Popular career choices among high school students include medical, dental, and public service. Students find helping people and being “good at it” is most appealing about their dream job.

Careers in the medical field or dental field have increased from a 15 percent interest to 19 percent with high school girls most likely to choose this career pathway.

Public service career interest has gone up 3 percent to 10 percent from the prior year’s 7 percent.