Notes in the Margins: Gender, unionized athletes and the myth of the STEM shortage myth

College athletes can unionize, federal agency says In a stunning ruling that could revolutionize a college sports industry worth billions of dollars and have dramatic repercussions at schools coast to coast, a federal agency said Wednesday that football players at Northwestern University can create the nation’s first union of college athletes. (Associated Press)

How one college went from 10% female computer-science majors to 40% Harvey Mudd College no longer wanted to weed out the weakest students during the first week of the semester. The new goal was to lure in female students and make sure they actually enjoyed their computer science initiation in the hopes of converting them to majors. (Quartz)

The gender factor in college admissions: Do men or women have an edge? According to federal data analyzed by The Washington Post, t 48 schools, women were admitted at a higher rate than men. The female edge was notable at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (eight percentage points), California Institute of Technology (10 points), Carnegie Mellon University (10 points) and Harvey Mudd College (24 points). At those four schools, men outnumbered women significantly. (The Washington Post)

Student loans still growing faster than any other debt and now most likely to be 90-days-plus delinquent About 11.5% of student loan balances are 90+ days delinquent or in default. That makes them both the fastest growing and the most troubled type of consumer loan. (The Hechinger Report)

The Myth of the Myth of the Science and Engineering Shortage While the evidence shows that the United States is not producing enough STEM workers, a cottage industry of STEM shortage naysayers has emerged. (Washington Monthly) 

  • Joe

    The “shortage” of STEM workers is due to the structural inefficiencies of the economy as a whole and not indicative of a lack of training or technical know-how. It becomes a problem when talented people with an ear for numbers are lured into the lucrative FIRE industries where their true talents are underappreciated.

  • Jim G

    There will be approximately 900 IT workers looking for jobs now that Cargill Inc. has announced it is outsourcing most of it IT operations to India. These workers were located in Hopkins, MN.