STEM Gap: No State Has More Women Than Men With Tech Degrees
While more women are getting STEM degrees and jobs than ever, they still lag behind the number of men. The lack of jobs may be the biggest problem down the road.
If it's not common knowledge that women in the United States earn cents for every dollar a man makes (89 cents, according to Pew Research), it should be. That's not the only place where the gaps between the genders remain. For the STEM gap, new research shows the state-by-state differences.
The research, entitled Mind the (STEM) Gap, was performed by Typing.com, a free service for teachers and students all about teaching typing and other tech skills -- like coding. They looked at the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Surveys from 2015 and 2017 to determine where the gaps were widest and narrowest.
The chart shows the gaps by state, according to the number of bachelor's degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. It underscores one serious fact: Not a single U.S. state has a population where more women than men have STEM degrees (though only 65 percent of STEM workers even earned a bachelor's). This data does not take into account the medical field -- if you count that, woman do indeed have more bachelor's degrees -- but the debate rages on whether medical counts as STEM.
The states with the smallest gap: the District of Columbia (6.8 percent) and New York (12.9 percent). The worst gaps are in New Mexico (22.5 percent) and Montana (22.3 percent).
Compared to 2015's numbers, the gender gaps have narrowed in some states (North Dakota was down 5.7 percent) and grown in others (Alaska was up 3.0 percent). The District of Columbia's small gap for 2017 also came from a narrowing since 2015 of 3.6 percent.
The overall numbers of workers vs. those who earned bachelor's is also a little troubling. While the number of women earning a STEM degree increased by 10 percent, the number increased for men, too. And the number of workers in STEM fields increased -- men by 8.1 percent compared to 5.3 percent for women.
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