Despite the country's general shortage of science, mathematics and engineering (SME) professionals (Holden, 1994), undergraduate education in these fields continues to be more of a "weeding-out" than a cultivation process (Miller, 1993). It may therefore come as little surprise that these fields are predicted to remain dominated by one gender (males) and one race (White) (Grandy, 1997). While the likelihood of students of color entering science, mathematics or engineering fields is slim, for the small number of undergraduate minority students who manage to major in SME the likelihood of remaining in the field and enrolling in subsequent graduate level education is even more improbable. Yet despite our knowledge that a shortage of people of color exists in SME fields, we know little of why talented minority students tend to shun SME and why those who do enter these fields at the undergraduate level "derail" from the track prior to the graduate level and entrance to related careers.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/linda_hagedorn/6/