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February 07, 2012

How do you know if you are inventive or an innovator — and whether you’re going to be the next Steve Jobs? Does labeling yourself really make a difference in which profession you go after?

It might, at least according to a new — and disturbing — study that suggests a strong lack of interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) jobs among young Americans. President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address stressed the need for a technical workforce, but the Lemelson-MIT Invention Index , which seeks to gauge young people’s perception of innovation, found that they misunderstand how new ideas are made into new realities.

While 26 percent of those who answered the survey noted that they’re motivated to choose careers based on overall stability, 22 percent said they want the chance to “change the world.” Almost three in four young women indicated that they are creative, yet fewer than one in three described themselves as inventive, the characteristic they associated most with original thinkers. Men didn’t seem to make this link either.

A New York Times article brings up another missed connection: About 40 percent of students planning to enter engineering and science majors end up switching or failing to get their degrees. “The president and industry groups have called on colleges to graduate 10,000 more engineers a year and 100,000 new teachers with majors in STEM,” says the article, the title of which indicates that science students don’t last because “it’s just so darn hard.”

AAUW’s research report Why So Few? Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics found that women are far less likely than men to enter STEM degrees in the first place despite higher average GPAs in high school STEM classes. Once in the major, they were just as likely as men to be driven out by discouraging college environments, which also tend to be void of female peers or mentors. This trend carries over into the workforce, where women remain severely underrepresented.

If our country needs more engineers, then we need to address the misperceptions of these young women and men. This generation recognizes that STEM careers offer the best opportunities for the future, according to a recent American Society for Quality study , but they don’t seem to be making the connection that invention and innovation in STEM have and can “change the world.” Need examples? Try Draped Gauze Midi Dress Black Vince fUJpw2x4yJ
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If students keep feeling like these majors are so challenging that they can’t even finish their degrees, our potential innovators will end up changing the world via communications or politics instead of new medical breakthroughs or more affordable computers. And if women continue to be put off by the professional climate and the perception that they don’t belong, we are cutting those chances in half.

Securing nominations is a competitive process. To ensure your application to the Academy will be complete, you should seek them in each of the categories for which you are eligible.

Each nominating authority employs its own processes and deadlines. Once you determine the categories in which you will seek a nomination, you must contact the appropriate authority to make your request, then follow their application processes to obtain one.

Since the process of securing nominations is lengthy, it is recommended that you request them during the Spring semester of your Junior year, or at the same time as you are completing your Pre-Candidate Questionnaire.

Note that regardless of when you initiate your request, the Academy must receive your nomination by January 31st. If we do not receive notice of a nomination by this deadline, you will be disqualified. Nominations do not carry over from year to year.

by January 31st.

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categories. The Academy also reserves a select number of cadet appointments for nominees in the Military Affiliated , U.S. Territory and International categories. To seek nominations, first determine the categories for which you are eligible:

Each Member of Congress is allowed to have a maximum of five cadets attending the Academy at one time. For each cadet vacancy that occurs, the member may nominate up to 10 candidates to be considered for appointment.Vacancies occur when cadets graduate or leave prior to graduation. To request nominations in this category, follow the guidelines in the Congressional Nomination Request Sample Letter .

You should request a nomination from both of your U.S. Senators and your U.S. Representative. Each has considerable latitude in awarding nominations; however, most are based upon some combination of academic achievement, leadership performance and athletic participation. Members of Congress want to nominate outstanding individuals from their states or districts who will have the best chance to qualify for appointment. While you must be a legal resident of the state or congressional district in which you are applying, it is not necessary to know your Member of Congress personally.

Each congressional office has its own procedures and closeout dates for accepting nomination requests. Get up-to-date contact information for your senators at http://www.senate.gov and representatives at http://www.house.gov . Be prepared to identify your place of residence by ZIP Code, state or congressional district. You will then access each member’s website for specific instructions on the nomination application process, including which office to contact and specific deadlines.

In contrast, several European nations have lost ground. The UK remains the second most-represented nation in the list, with 10 universities, even though two institutions – the University of Bristol and Durham University – have fallen out of the top 100. Seven of the 10 have slipped to lower positions.

Four of Germany’s six institutions and four of the Netherlands’ five representatives have also dropped down the list, while Denmark and Finland no longer feature among the top 100. They each had one institution in Rag amp; Bone Woman Kent Suede Platform Espadrille Sneakers Sand Size 41 Rag amp; Bone W1EAJqKl
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In many cases, these European universities achieved similar or higher scores than they did last year, but they did not improve as rapidly as institutions in Asia.

Paul Blackmore, professor of higher education at King’s College London ’s Policy Institute, said that Asia’s stronger performance is the result of a combination of “undoubted growth in university systems” and “of more being known [about them] among those giving a view”.

“We’ve had a highly Anglo-Saxon view of higher education for many years, and that can’t be sustained for much longer,” he said.

Joshua Mok Ka-Ho, vice-president and chair professor of comparative policy at Hong Kong’s Lingnan University, added that Asia’s performance reflects heavy higher education investments from many governments in the region as well as universities concentrating funding on strengthening their research capabilities and publishing in international journals.

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“Such self-enhancing and advancing trends will continue, particularly when an increasing number of governments in Asia have recognised the importance of research, knowledge transfer, innovation and technology in transforming the economy and society,” he said.

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