Minorities In STEM Education

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Minorities are underrepresented in the field of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), and there are factors that contribute to this phenomenon. (Lancaster & Xu, 2017). One contributing factor to the underrepresentation of minorities in STEM is the achievement gap between minorities and whites. Unfortunately, many studies affirm that educators have low academic expectations for students of color (Olszewski-Kubilius, 2003). Thereby, students of color complete fewer advanced courses and less rigorous curriculum than their white counterparts (2003), and these advanced courses, specifically in mathematics, are required to enter into the STEM curricula at post-secondary institutions (Diemer, Marchand, McKellar, & Malanchuk, 2016).…show more content…
I have commented to my family, friends, and colleagues about being the sole survivor in college as well as professionally. I have also lamented about being isolated in my field. However, if I continue to complain without actions, there will be no change in the STEM community. I cannot continue to “reproduce and perpetuate the inequities inherent” (Shields, 2009, p. 57) in the field of STEM through my educational practices. In becoming a transformative educator, as described by Shields, I must acknowledge the inequities and use my power to lessen these inequities as barriers to STEM education. Thus, in my role as an instructor at a technical college, I must facilitate deliberate actions within my classroom and community to make a difference for other minorities to pursue STEM education and remain on course to complete their STEM education. In reflecting on the factors that contribute to the underrepresentation of minorities in STEM, I have a deeper understanding of the barriers that affect and perpetuate this phenomenon. Therefore, I utilize Harper’s (2009) race-conscious engagement practices as a model to ameliorate the factors affecting minorities…show more content…
41). Subsequently, effective educators must acknowledge that different groups are treated differently on campus (2009). In acknowledging this differential treatment, educators must accept the responsibility to promote engagement of minority students and their success, which is the first step to race-conscious engagement practices (2009). In my practice, minorities have described to me instances in which faculty members have mistreated them based on comparisons to the treatment of their white counterparts. Jackson and Winfield (2014) also found that minorities were treated unfairly in the STEM disciplines. Thus, I acknowledge that minorities are treated differently in classrooms at my college as well as other institutions of higher learning. Therefore, I must make a concerted effort to engage minority students in my classroom to promote their academic
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