The underrepresentation of racial minorities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (the STEM disciplines) education and careers has had a very long tenure in America. For much of this nation's history, African-Americans, Latinos and American Indians, as well as women of all races, were considered to be members of sub-populations that had neither contributed nor were likely to contribute much to our national capabilities in science and technology and, consequently, little emphasis was placed on efforts to increase their participation. The truth is that all these groups have made significant contributions despite having to overcome monumental obstacles and difficulties.
Brooks Slaughter, J. (2011), "Foreword", Frierson, H.T. and Tate, W.F. (Ed.) Beyond Stock Stories and Folktales: African Americans' Paths to STEM Fields (Diversity in Higher Education, Vol. 11), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. xix-xxiii. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1479-3644(2011)0000011004
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