Representation matters everywhere, and nowhere is it more important than in the workforce. As the U.S. faces a shortage of STEM workers, female STEM workers are particularly underrepresented. But to get girls in STEM, they have to see themselves in the field.
Female students aren’t motivated to study STEM in college or pursue STEM careers if their classes or career fields are made up of a sea of white men. No representation means fewer girls in STEM–women make up almost 50 percent of the workforce, but hold less than 25 percent of STEM jobs.
Read more: What motivates girls to pursue STEM?
4 career connections to help get more girls in STEM
An increasing number of women of color and different religions account for elected local, state, and federal lawmakers and leaders. Movies like Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel bring “main character” female representation to super hero films, while movies like Black Panther feature strong women of color–one of whom happens to be both a princess and a brilliant scientific inventor.