A new study has found that nearly 30 per cent of LGBT young people avoid a career in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) due of fears of discrimination.
The study, which was undertaken by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), also found that only 26 per cent of girls were interested in pursuing this career compared to 43 per cent of boys, Computer Weekly reported.
Jo Foster, diversity and inclusion manager at the IET, claimed that many LGBT+ people don’t pursue this career path but the subjects have a “huge image problem”.
She said: “The research backs up fears that gender stereotyping within STEM careers is alive and well, potentially damaging the diversity of talent coming into the industry.
“This, coupled with the fact that there is an estimated annual shortfall of 59,000 technicians to fill engineering roles, clearly demonstrates a need for action.”
It is reported that stereotypes surrounding these kind of roles are often blamed for preventing the sector to attract diverse talent.
The IET study found that 34 per cent of young people also said the ability to work in interesting fields was more likely to encourage them into a STEM career.