The CITE, a blog published by the National Association of College Stores, takes a look at the intersection of education and technology, highlighting issues that range from course materials to learning delivery to the student experience. Comments, discussion, feedback, and ideas are welcome.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Gen Z Shows Little Interest in IT Careers

The young men and women who make up Generation Z expect and demand that their mobile devices work seamlessly and are integrated into every aspect of their lives. The problem is, new data suggest they have little interest in making information technology a career.

According to a survey conducted by the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), 70% of teen and young adult respondents said they “love technology,” but only 19% of those aged 18-24 said they were interested in an IT career. In addition, 21% of those aged 13-17 said they were not interested in IT as a career.

“On the surface, it seems like the affinity for technology is a great thing for the future workforce, since technology will be so intertwined with business,” the CompTIA report said. “However, most students are not eyeing a career in IT as a result of their technology learnings.”

The lack of interest is particularly troublesome for colleges and universities that are increasing the use of technology to handle everything from enrollment to graduation rates, according to a report in eCampus News. Stanford has even made a national plea for experts in the field of data science, and innovators are creating departments on campus focused on data science, and IT management.

While the survey of Generation Z proved disappointing, there may be good news on the horizon. A January online survey from The Harris Poll found that while most parents of K-12 students discourage their kids from becoming teachers in science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) subjects, 50% identified engineering as the career they would most prefer their children pursue.

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