This past week President Obama announced a lofty goal for 2020: to have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world (http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Excerpts-of-the-Presidents-remarks-in-Warren-Michigan-and...). One critical component to achieving this goal is student success. According to NCES, 33% of entering college students are needing remediation and end up taking developmental education courses to reach college level math, reading and writing. As chemists and chemical educators, what can we do to enhance student success in chemistry and in the sciences both in high school and in college?
There are two presidential comments that I'd like to pull from--
JFK said that we don't do things (like go to the moon) because it is easy. We go because it is hard.
President Obama ran on the slogan of "Yes, we can". Instilling these attitiudes in our students and truly preparing our students for the next level post high school -- whether it is for a job or college or both -- is what we need to focus on. Last weekend I hosted a wonderful P-16 alignment symposium on college and career readiness. Of the 65 attendees, the majority left wanting more. We're beginning to create what is needed. Let's keep the fire burning!