Science? Why?

June 20, 2010 § Leave a comment

This article discussing the real problem with focusing on science education in America struck a cord with me. My 9-year-old son is very interested in being a scientist. I asked him what he wants to study – what type of scientist he wants to be. His was response was, “I don’t know – I guess I’ll be a science teacher.”

While I applaud his school and his science teacher for instilling a love of science and curiosity about the world around him, what we’ve failed to do in a larger context is give him a reason to pursue it. Eight years to pursue a Ph.D., significant competition to find a job, and then, if successful, his success will be more dependent on his ability to procure funding by marketing himself than by his efficacy as a scientist.

Or he can become a science teacher…

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