It appears that not much has changed over the past several years - women are still not showing much interest in technical fields such as engineering. In fact, of the 855 people majoring in engineering at Georgia Tech, only 87 of them are women. On the national scale, only about 1/5 of enginerring students are women.
Why is it that women are not as interested in the field of engineering as their male counterparts? Is it due to stereotyping? Does our educational system fail to encourage women to enter the field? Are women just misinformed when it comes to what an engineer really does? According to one study, many women weren't interested in the field of engineering simply because they didn't perceive it as a field that allowed them to help others. Is this the key to getting more women into the field? Do schools and high school counselors need to better demonstrate to girls the many ways that engineering can impact the lives of others?
The fact is, the United States needs to find a way to get women more interested in the field of engineering if we hope to remain competitive with other countries in the field. Currently, the United States falls far behind other countries such as India and China when it comes to the number of engineers, and scientists in general for that matter, that we graduate from our colleges. Getting more women and minorities interested in the field is key to increasing our numbers of engineers. In addition, the diverse and creative perspective brought in by women can help set the United States apart from other countries. So, it is time to start finding some answers to these questions.