According to the literature, there are racial inequities that exist in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education and careers. The 2013 U.S. Census Bureau indicates that Blacks and Latinos are underrepresented in STEM, with each group making up less than 7% of the STEM workforce; while Whites are overrepresented, making up 70% of the workforce (Landivar, 2013). In terms of readiness to enter a STEM major and ultimately a career, only 6% of Blacks and 13% of Latinos, compared to 36% of Whites and 53% of Asians, are actually prepared (ACT, 2016). This results from a lack of exposure to STEM in K-12 education, mathematics phobia, students’ misperceptions of what science is, lack of real-life application of science, lack of motivation to succeed, and peer pressure that devalues high achievement (Coleman, 2015).
Coleman, Adrienne; Acquaye, Amber '16; Cardona, Xiomara '16; Ingram, Kayla '14; Kleczewski,, Trennedy '16; and Sawyers, Elysia '16, "YES, STEM is for ALL: Diverse Perspectives on Black and Latino STEM Motivation" (2018). Publications & Research. 35.