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VOA慢速[教育报道]如何培养更多的女工程师?

2015-03-10    来源:普特英语听力    【      美国外教 在线口语培训
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Not enough American students want to be engineers, mathematicians, or scientists. The Obama administration wants to change that. They are spending money to do it. The government will invest three billion dollars in the education of young Americans in science, technology, engineering, and math. The four areas together are known as STEM.

Many jobs in the STEM fields will open in the coming years. The U.S. government's investment aims to increase the number of Americans who can take those jobs.

Yet girls appear far less interested in STEM subjects than boys. Only 25 percent of STEM students are girls.

Camsie McAdams is at the U.S. Education Department. She says girls simply do not feel welcomed in STEM subjects. Ms. McAdams says young women look at industries such as engineering and computer science and see most of the leaders are men.

"We, as women, want to have people that look like us, people that we can relate to. A lot of times what distracts people from entering the field, or, even when they get the degree, keeps them from wanting to work in the field, is because they don't feel welcomed."

Debbie Sterling is an engineer. She invented a construction toy for girls. The name of the toy is "Goldie Blox." Ms. Sterling hopes Goldie Blox will help girls develop spatial skills. Spatial skills help engineers and builders to think about objects in three dimensions.

To interest girls, Sterling created the character "Goldie." Goldie does not care about beauty or clothes. Goldie tells stories, solves difficult problems and creates pretend worlds.

Mia is a seven-year-old girl who likes science. In her room, she has no fashion dolls. Instead, she has a pegboard, wheels, blocks and an inventor's journal to write her observations.

Mia received a set of Goldie Blox from her grandmother. She learned to make a machine with the blocks.

"When my grandmother first sent me the present, a spinning machine, I was really excited. I knew it had to do with engineering, so I grabbed the box and opened it. Then I went for more -- I went to the web site; I went on YouTube to find more videos. My mom asked me why I was just watching videos instead of building. I told her I didn't have enough pieces. She got me the builder survival kit."

Experts say parents should do more than just buy toys to interest their girls in STEM subjects. They should also provide a good education. At school, girls should participate in projects that require teamwork and creative thinking.

Women in scientific and technical jobs are also working to encourage young women to explore STEM. One is Anu Tewary. She studied Applied Physics and worked for technology companies. After she had a daughter, she started Technovation Challenge. The challenge is an international competition for young women from 10 to 18 years old.

Technovation offers girls the opportunity to learn how to start a company and become high-tech entrepreneurs. Since 2009, over 2,500 girls from 28 countries have developed 650 mobile phone applications. They learned to launch start-up companies through Technovation.

There's a good chance that soon, more young women using mobile phones will also be developing programs for them.

I'm Anne Ball.


在美国想成为工程师、数学家或是科学家的学生并不多。奥巴马政府打算改变这一现状,并投入资金。政府将投资30亿美元用于美国年轻一代在科学、技术、工程和数学方面的教育。这四个领域被合称为STEM。

STEM领域的很多就业机会将会在最近几年开放。美国政府投资的目标是增加从事这些岗位的美国人数量。

然而女生对STEM科目的兴趣远远不如男生,仅有25%的STEM学生是女生。

Camsie McAdams目前任职于美国教育部,她说女生不过是感觉自己在STEM科目中不受欢迎。因为年轻女性发现在工程和计算机科学等领域,其领导层大多为男性。

“作为女人,我们希望能接触到同类人,在多数情况下,致使人们远离一个领域,或者即使获得了学位也愿意不在这个领域工作的原因就是因为她们感觉自己不受欢迎。”

Debbie Sterling是名工程师,她为女孩子发明了一种组装玩具,名字叫Goldie Blox。Sterling希望通过这种玩具能帮助女孩们开发空间技能。空间技能帮助工程师和建筑师思考三维中的物体。

为了激发女生的兴趣,Sterling创造了Goldie这个角色,Goldie不在乎美貌和穿着。她会讲故事,解决难题,并开发虚拟世界。

Mia今年7岁,是个喜欢科学女生。在她的房间里,她没有时尚的玩具,而是构图板、轮子、积木,以及一本记录自己观察的发明者日记。 Mia从祖母那得到了一套Goldie Blox,她学会了用这些积木制造机器。

“祖母给我的第一套玩具是纺纱机,我很开心。我知道它和工程有关,所以我拿过盒子打开了它。然后我上网找更多东西,我上YouTube找更多的视频。我妈妈问我为何我只是看视频而不是亲自动手做。我告诉她因为我没有足够的积木来做,于是她就给我买了一套建筑师工具套装。”

专家称父母们不应该只给STEM科目中的女生买玩具,还应该提供良好的教育。在学校里,女生应参加需要团队合作和创造性思维的活动项目。从事科学和技术工作的女性也鼓励年轻女性探索STEM学科。Anu Tewary就是其中一个,她攻读了应用物理学后在科技公司工作。有了女儿之后,她创办了“技术创新挑战”。该挑战是一项面向10到18岁女孩的国际竞赛。

“技术创新”挑战为女孩学习如何创立公司并成为高科技企业家提供了机会。2009年以来,来自28个国家的2500多名女孩开发了650个移动手机应用程式。她们通过“技术创新”挑战学会了如何创立公司。

或许不久也会有更多使用手机的年轻女性开发程序。我是Anne Ball。

文本来源于普特论坛[report整理] SENEWS-2015-01-22



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