The funding will be used to broaden young women’s participation in the AMC 8, AMC 10A, AMC 10B, and AMC 12A exams. Increasing participation in mathematics through the AMC exams, taken in middle and high school, can improve the chances of students-most notably young women-pursuing STEM fields. According to Pew Research Center, women’s representation in STEM has made gains over the past 25 years which has largely contributed to women’s overrepresentation in health-related jobs (75%). However, women are underrepresented among other STEM occupations such as engineering (14%), computer science (25%), and mathematics (46%).
In a study conducted by PLOS ONE, female college students are 1.5 times more likely to leave STEM fields than their male counterparts. 35% of surveyed female students who had initially intended to major in STEM but decided against taking Calculus II selected “I do not believe I understand the ideas of Calculus I well enough to take Calculus II,” as compared with just 14% of male students. The study suggests that a lack of confidence in their mathematical ability, not their mathematical capability itself, is a major factor in dissuading women from pursuing majors and careers in STEM.
The AMC exam awards and certificates are designed to encourage more young women to explore and pursue their interests in mathematics by focusing on:
About the Awards
AMC 8 – The D. E. Shaw Group AMC 8 Awards & Certificates
AMC 10A – Maryam Mirzakhani AMC 10A Awards & Certificates
AMC 10B – Two Sigma AMC 10B Awards & Certificates
AMC 12A - Jane Street AMC 12A Awards & Certificates
The scholarships will be presented at the 2021 Mathematical Olympiad Awards Ceremony in Washington, DC and the certificates will be provided to the 145 top-scoring women from each named competition.
“The support we received from these generous donors strengthens MAA’s commitment to inclusivity,” said Jennifer Barton, director of competition operations for AMC. “Growing the program to now awarding over 20 scholarships should give us all confidence that we are moving the needle in the right direction. We know more work needs to be done and without the support from our donors, it would be impossible.”
If you are interested in supporting this initiative or other programs at the MAA visit our website. Learn more about this prize and stay updated on the award announcement.
The Mathematical Association of America is the world’s largest community of mathematicians, students, and enthusiasts. We accelerate the understanding of our world through mathematics because mathematics drives society and shapes our lives. Learn more at maa.org.
Communications Coordinator at Mathematical Association of America