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Undergraduates abandon computer science amid fears of offshoring
March 29, 2004

Undergraduates in U.S. universities are starting to abandon their studies in computer technology and engineering amid widespread worries about the accelerating pace of offshoring by high-technology employers.

A new study, to be published in May, shows there was a dramatic drop-off of enrollment in those fields last year - 19 percent - and some educators warn about the potential consequences for America's global competitiveness.

Enrollment in undergraduate computer-science courses continued to grow after the collapse of the dot-com bubble until the sharp decline in the 2002-03 academic year, according to the Washington-based Computing Research Association. The number of newly declared majors in computer science also showed a sudden 23 percent plunge last year.

``I don't know about outsourcing, but I know how tough it is to get a good job these days,'' said Ronan, whose older brother earned a technology degree three years ago but kept his day job as a supermarket checkout clerk.



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