A realistic description of the barriers into STEM for students who are not from the schools that are expected to succeed. I can believe that these kinds of problems exist. Figuring out a way around them is the hard part.
This type of pre-judging of students happens all too often. Students from poor and poorly performing school districts, students who wear sagging pants or speak slang or with accents, students that may not make good grades, students from single-parent/multi-generation homes – these kids are denied an opportunity to participate at the gate. I cannot count the number of students I have encountered who have promise but absolutely no idea where to start or how to get started.
I have seen in at the high school and college level – professors that turn away students with GEDs or those who struggle academically, but who show up anyway. So many students who have been dismissed or passed over by teachers, guidance counselors, and professors because s/he may not be polished enough for top-level science. (Whatever that means.)