Gary May, dean of Georgia Tech's College of Engineering, the largest in the nation, weighs in on why engineers are in such high demand.
U.S News and World Report recently reported that the unemployment rate in the field of engineering is at two percent. Industry watchers see demand for all types of engineers particularly in electrical, computer, mechanical and petroleum engineering, to name a few. But the percentage of U.S. undergraduates enrolled in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs is now down to its lowest level in recent memory. According to the National Science Foundation, only 4.5 percent of all undergraduates graduate from college with engineering degrees.
This is not just a matter of numbers. The disappearance of students from engineering programs poses a threat to America’s global competitiveness. Sweeping solutions are needed to address what is a national problem. We must meet two fundamental challenges – attracting more young minds to the field of engineering and keeping them there until they successfully complete engineering degrees.
Using a mix of strategies and tactics at Georgia Tech, we are attracting women and minorities to engineering in large numbers and, I am proud to say, graduating them, making Georgia Tech the nation’s largest and most diverse college of engineering. Georgia Tech was recently recognized at the White House for its excellence in engineering education and its level of commitment to retention, graduation and diversity.
Georgia Tech's College of Engineering Dean Gary May shakes hands with U.S. President Barack
Obama at a White House Ceremony on Feb. 8 celebrating deans of engineering schools for their
excellence and commitment to educating and graduating more engineers.
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