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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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Science And Research

The days of unquestioned American dominance over the world are over.

Other countries seem to be pushing their way onto the global scene and edging America out. One reason that America seems to be losing its edge is our lack of emphasis on science and math education. India and China are churning out scientists and engineers at an unprecedented pace. Companies are importing workers and exporting their research and development to other nations.

The United States has always been the main source of innovation in the modern world. Most of the advancements that have improved global quality of life had been created here. As we lost our ability to compete with the number of foreign scientists, America made fewer and fewer innovations. The future economy of the world will be determined by the nation that takes advantage of new ideas and technologies. In the near future, “green” technology will likely explode as the need  and demand for environmental stewardship grows.

The declining number of American students that pursue math and science may be due to a number of factors. One such reason might be the American belief that it has no other superpower or dominant nation to compete with. During the Cold War, there was massive innovation in America, when there was an obvious competitor for international power. The United States has won the Cold War, partly through our ability to absorb massive debt incurred by the arms race and the stability of our government. American culture has now spread through the world as kids everywhere are wearing jeans and listening to American music. This same popular culture however might also be a factor in our scientific and mathematical decline. Pop culture often portrays  scientists and researchers as boring and socially incompetent. They are usually the ones at the butt end of jokes and can never seem to find a date. This alone might be enough to keep impressionable young children away, who do not want to do something that will make them supposed ‘nerds’ in society

Whatever the cause, it is clear that something needs to be done, including youth based programs, government spending and parental guidance. Young adults need to understand that these fields offer a solid career, as well as ensure the competitiveness of their nation in the future world. The winter olympics in Vancouver is a perfect time to reevaluate where we are as a country and where we want to head. It’s time to find a way to make sure that we are not completely overtaken in these vital fields.

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