Connecting to STEM
Jobs in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics field have slowly been on the increase. In the US the amount of STEM jobs have doubled with an annual growth rate of 5.9%. Whilst in the UK, the percentage of STEM jobs has increased by 1.5% since 2008. Though this is only a small increase, it still means that interest in working in these industries is on the rise and has its benefits. After all, in the US STEM jobs are typically considered to be one of the highest paying industries.
The increase in working in these fields of work is all down to targeting pupils while they are still in education. There are often misconceptions about working in the STEM industries, so educating pupils on the benefits is a great way of gaining interest and helping guide them on a pathway that may lead to a career in any of the fields of work related to STEM. On average, females show less interest in pursuing careers in science and technology, but the interest is slowly on the rise.
At this moment in time, the UK produces only 90,000 STEM graduates a year. This means that the UK faces a shortage of qualified engineers. In order to raise these figures, careers in STEM are being massively promoted to try and encourage people from all backgrounds to join. One of the main problems we are seeing is the lack of females working in STEM.
So how can we further develop the interest in STEM and what exciting initiatives are being developed to push STEM in the future?
Social media is being used as one of the main tools to promote and push STEM globally. As seen in the Connecting to STEM infographic below campaigns like the ‘Your Life’ campaign currently has over 28,000 views on YouTube alone and with over two thirds of the population using social media sites, it makes it useful tool to spread information about STEM.
It is a great platform to allow both students and pupils to interact with professionals in the STEM fields too. NASA encouraging STEM participation in Google hangouts and the Telegraph Jobs Women in Spaces database shows all the past and present women that have had an influence on the aerospace industry in STEM related job roles, in the hope that it will inspire more young women to join it.
The future looks very promising for STEM jobs, with social STEM and digital awareness growing in education. In 2015, the UK government will step up the efforts to recruit 10,000 teachers in STEM subjects, in 2020 the target is to have 6 million people educated in STEM programmes and in 2023 President Obama pledges to train 100,000 new STEM teachers.