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February 23, 2023

Redesigned Message to Attract Students Needed, DiscoverE Survey Shows

Redesigned Message to Attract Students Needed, DiscoverE Survey Shows

DiscoverE and the Global Strategy Group conducted a year-long research project last year to find out today’s teens and their parent’s perception about engineering.

The research titled “Message Matters: Effective Messages for Reaching Tomorrow’s Innovators” was designed to gauge students’ and parents’ level of understanding and interest in engineering; assess general career motivators; evaluate current messages, identify more effective messaging, and recognize differing the messaging needed based on race, gender, and self-identified disabilities.

More than 4,000 high school students and 1,000 parents were surveyed.

Key findings include:

  • Half the total high school students surveyed are either very interested (18%) or somewhat interested (32%) in engineering as a career compared to 30% not interested at all.
  • Specific categories include Men (24% very interested; 38% somewhat interested; 19% not at all interested); Women (19% very; 29% somewhat; 32% not at all); Black (17% very; 32 somewhat; 34 not at all); Hispanic (16% very; 35 somewhat; 25% not at all).

When students were asked how much they have spoken to someone about a career future, the top three responses were: Mother/Female parent or guardian (55%); Father/Male parent or guardian (42%); and Close friends (41%).

And when asked to choose from a long list of factors regarding importance in considering a future career choice, financial security was the top choice for both parents (61%) and students (55%).

Messages Matter researcher called it an “a-ha moment” when it became clear how current engineering industry messaging, emphasized (engineers solve problems using math and science) while overlooking critical work being done by engineers, nor aligning messages more successfully with current student career or personal aspirations.

Click here to view the DiscoverE “Messages Matter” report.

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February 23, 2023



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