At all levels of government, there is a massive drive to promote education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, the so-called STEM subjects. All across America students are performing experiments, proving theorems, learning how to code and building pieces of equipment. The transformation of the global economy has led to a huge demand for people skilled in the STEM subjects. This rise in demand comes at a time when there is a shortage of people with the necessary STEM skills. A widely cited survey conducted in 2013 on behalf of the Bayer Corp, found that even though STEm enterprises were creating more jobs than non-STEM enterprises, only half of the businesses polled reported being able to find candidates with four-year STEM degrees. It is clear that society needs to support the development of STEM skills. In this article, we will explain how STEM education serves future careers.
The earlier children are exposed to STEM education, the better. It has been found that children who are exposed to STEM education early on perform better than children who were not. A very interesting side effect of early exposure to STEM education is that children will often change their future careers thanks to their exposure to STEM education. Yet, many schools have underfunded STEM programs and do not provide opportunities for children enthusiastic about STEM subjects, to perform experiments, do projects, solve programs and other such activities.
Because of the importance of STEM subjects, there has been a rise in the number of high schools, after-school programs and summer schools especially dedicated to prioritising the teaching of STEM subjects. These schools and programs meet the needs of children who are thirsty for exposure to best STEAM and STEM schools. Many summer schools and after-school programs give children the platform to conduct experiments, build apps, design and build robots, develop video games and other activities that stimulate the imaginations of children.
Aside from stimulating the imaginations of children, as well as increasing their proficiency in the subject, a focus on teaching STEM subjects changes children’s perceptions of what they can do in life. This is very important because research suggests that STEM businesses will grow twice as fast as non-STEM businesses over the next decade. The world has a big need for professionals with STEM skills. A compelling side-effect of this demand is that people with STEM skills are likely to earn $500,000 more than their non-STEM peers, over their lives. That is a huge premium paid to people with STEM skills, a premium which can lead to substantial differences in quality of life between those with and without STEM skills. It’s a premium that reflects the increasing importance of STEM skills in theA American economy.
As we survey the education landscape, it’s clear that many children are being short-changed by not having access to quality STEM education. This leaves them either unaware of the benefits of STEM skills or unable to take advantage of the opportunities available to those with STEM skills.