A Harris Interactive survey conducted on behalf of the American Society for Quality indicated that 85 percent of youth, ages 8 to 17, say they are not interested in a future engineering career for a variety of reasons.

The top three reasons were: Kids don’t know much about engineering — 44 percent.

Kids prefer a more exciting career than engineering — 30 percent.

They don’t feel confident enough in their math or science skills — 21 percent — to be good at it. Yet, the largest number of kids ranked math (22 percent) and science (17 percent) as their favorite subjects.

The survey, of parents as well as youths, aimed to provide a better understanding about the perceptions of selecting an engineering career in light of a troubling shortage, which will reach 70,000 by 2010, according to an estimate by the National Science Foundation.