ThurmSpeaks::Cool Math Versus Hollywood and Sports

I posted the following to my AzFoo@AzCentral.com blog on 22 February 2009.

"U.S. kids need to do 'cool' math" was the title of Taylor W. Lawrence's "My Turn" printed by the Arizona Republic on 17 February 02009. Lawrence is president of Tucson-based Raytheon Missile Systems and it comes as no surprise that he is worried about having a computationally thinking workforce in the 21st century.

Lawrence lamented about how today's young people are turned off to CSTEM (Computing, Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) because it morphs them into geeks and nerds. I agree with his assessment.

"Even the success of ubergeek Bill Gates has not really reversed this trend," wrote Lawrence. Again, I agree with Lawrence.

Lawrence's words reminded me of the following quote by Jerry Yang (co-founder of Yahoo!): "Today in China, Bill Gates is Britney Spears. In America today, Britney Spears is Britney Spears--and that is our problem."

Yang's words are right on; too bad Raytheon can't hit Hollywood with some of their missiles. U.S. educators can try to make CSTEM cooler than kewl, but they'll always be on the losing end as long a fortunes are being made by actors and athletes.

Creator: Gerald Thurman [gthurman@gmail.com]
Created: 22 February 2009
Last Modified: Saturday, 05-Jan-2013 11:15:48 MST

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