News and views on what matters to me: mindfulness, leadership, public relations, marketing, social media, pop culture and every now and then I will surprise you with something else.
Math and science scores amongst youth yet again reveal that American students are far behind in comparison to their foreign counter parts. Motivating students towards careers in those fields has become increasingly more difficult in a society that puts heavy emphasis on celebrity and glorifies flashy careers in entertainment and advertising. The military as well as the Olympics are having a similar challenge in engaging youth https://majastevanovich.wordpress.com/2009/10/19/olympics-military-share-a-challenge-engaging-youth/.
Big defense contractors iRobot and Raytheon have embarked on projects to potentially offer some solutions to the growing problem that is lack of interest for math and science; interestingly enough, both of their projects are in the entertainment space. By now, most have realized that the entertainment (music, television, movies, theme parks, professional sports, etc.) is a powerful medium when it comes to attracting youth.
iRobot has partnered with the rock artist Lansdowne to produce the above video. Exposing their robots to the younger demographic through a medium that youth relates to can generate some very favorable thinking about robots. In turn, that should hopefully foster more thinking about science and math.
On the other hand, Raytheon has partnered with Disney to design a ride where guests can customize their own level of thrill enabled through the massive robotic structure.
Understanding youth and what motivates them is coming one step closer to providing messaging that will influence them to think about entities that are not necessarily on top of their mind. Entertainment and using it in a compelling way is one gateway. What are other solutions?