Olá de novo

I’m back from our Brazil trip — fabulous waterfalls at Iguazu and four very hot (and humid) days in Rio. It turns out February is the hottest month there.

We saw soccer volleyball — they kick and head the ball, but don’t use their hands — on Copacabana beach, and hit the usual tourist sites, such as the Christ the Redeemer statue. Sugar Loaf, the Teatro Municipal and Santa Teresa. We didn’t see any mosquitoes, though I’m more at risk from insect repellent poisoning than Zika.

Blogging will resume today.

The skills mismatch

“While jobs requiring STEM knowledge and skills are growing at nearly twice the rate of other occupations in the United States, just 13 percent of college students choose a STEM major, according to Investigating the Skills Mismatch on the Top of the Class blog. More than 40 percent of Chinese college graduates and nearly 50 percent in Singapore have STEM degrees, according to an Accenture report. Brazil will pass the U.S. in new engineering PhDs by 2016.

Source: Accenture. (2011).

Only 10 percent of Chinese engineers and 25 percent of Indian engineers are educated to a global standard, compared to 80 percent of U.S. engineers, a 2005 McKinsey report found. However, there are a lot of people in China and India. “Accenture calculates that even if just 20 percent of Chinese STEM graduates are qualified to a world standard, this would represent more than 700,000 graduates by 2015, as compared to just 460,000 in the United States.”