My purpose for this response is not disparage Black Enterprise Magazine nor the persons in the article but to help the further the conversation on areas of job growth.Our country’s environment and infrastructure are paramount to our country’s long-term economic prosperity. Unfortunately, the public learns most about the shortages professional in these markets when disaster strikes.
Diversity Dilemma: Why African American Civil Engineering Candidates Are Hard To Find And How Civil Engineering Companies Can Help Fix It
It is no secret that the civil engineering profession has a shortage of talent and efforts to recruit more women and minorities into the profession have been fair to moderately successful. Some want to blame the mixed results on the lack of interest in engineering careers by diversity candidates. Others blame the “good old boy” network whose invisible hand allegedly sabotages diversity recruiting efforts to preserve the “culture” of the profession. I acknowledge that discrimination still exists in the workplace, but I do not wholly subscribe to the lack of interest in engineering or the “good old boy” conspiracy. My hypothesis on why African American candidates are hard to find is much simpler: The civil engineering profession loses its chance to recruit African American engineering graduates because of the failure of the education system to produce enough qualified candidates and the fact that the civil engineering profession has limited exposure in the black community.