As we reported last week, average career earnings for bachelor’s degree graduates in the biosciences are considerably lower than those of other STEM fields and even lower than the average for bachelor’s degree graduates in non-STEM fields.
So it certainly qualifies as a major disconnect that the number of Florida State University System bachelor’s degree grads in the biosciences has exploded during the last ten years, according to the SUS Interactive Database. The number of bioscience degrees awarded has nearly tripled, from 1,392 in 2003-2004 to 3,629 in 2012-2013.
Growth in the number of bioscience bachelors’ degrees has far outpaced the growth in engineering degrees. And the number of degrees in computer fields has not yet recovered to its 2003-2004 level after the severe decline that followed the bursting of the internet bubble.
This is not just a university-level problem. Students prepare for and select STEM fields based on their experiences at the K-12 level. The emphasis of the Florida K-12 system on biology has certainly contributed to the explosive growth of bioscience degrees.