Research Shows Teen Girls' Interest in STEM Careers Continues to Lag Boys' InterestResearch Shows Teen Girls' Interest in STEM Careers Continues to Lag Boys' Interest

Junior Achievement & EY survey of 13-17 year olds shows teens are changing plans based on the economy; surprising 91 percent know their future field of study

Style Magazine Newswire | 6/13/2017, 9:59 a.m.
New research conducted on behalf of Junior Achievement and EY shows that a surprising 91 percent of teenage boys and ...

Virtually all teens picture a conventional route to their dream job: accepting paid/unpaid internships, volunteering for like-minded organizations or starting out in a related field. However, boys prioritize wanting to gain technology skills, while girls expect relationship building and teamwork to help them most in the workplace.

The skills teens want to learn to prepare for their dream jobs includes technology skills (54% boys vs. 27% girls), relationship building and collaboration (50% girls vs. 31% boys), speaking and giving presentations (39%), analytical/critical thinking (34%), business knowledge (26%) and writing (16%).

“The research findings around gender differences related to career skills and workplace aspirations further validate the importance of building a supportive and inclusive culture where diverse thinking and experiences are not only encouraged, but valued as we introduce the next generation of purpose-driven workers into the workforce,” said Gary Kozlowski, Partner, Ernst & Young LLP, who leads a network of EY leaders serving on more than 40 local JA boards across the US, Canada and the Caribbean. “It is a privilege to work with JA USA to mobilize EY professionals to serve as mentors in schools and classrooms. Our colleagues appreciate the opportunity to give back and support JA’s mission of fostering financial literacy, entrepreneurship and work readiness skills – a meaningful way for EY to demonstrate our commitment of building a better working world.”

Other Data Points

Only nine percent of boys and girls aspire to start their own business.

Only seven percent of boys and girls have chosen to work in public service.

The three top influences on career choices are parents and societal influences/TV/media, followed by a class or teacher.

In this survey, careers in STEM were further defined as scientist, researcher, computer programmer, engineer, physicist.

In this survey, careers in the medical/dental field were further defined as doctor, nurse, veterinarian, dentist, physical therapist.

In this survey, careers in the arts were further defined as musician, actor, artist, writer.


This report presents the findings of ORC International’s Youth CARAVAN survey conducted among a sample of 1,000 13-17 year olds. This survey was live from February 28 to March 5, 2017.

Respondents for this survey are selected from among those who have volunteered to participate in online surveys and polls. Because the sample is based on those who initially self-selected for participation, no estimates of sampling error can be calculated. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to multiple sources of error, including, but not limited to sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options.