STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and math, and the future of the U.S. manufacturing industry is heavily dependent upon today’s STEM education.
But why should a nation that has been so wonderfully successful and leading worldwide innovation based on STEM skills be concerned?
Part of the reason may be that the strategic importance that was once placed on STEM education decades ago isn’t recognized the same way today. Additionally, the term “strategic” may not be viewed the same way, either. Too often, we think about today, this week, or even five years from now. And in truth, this is only the tactical future. Strategic discussions need to focus on what our great country, and our companies, will need across the next 30 years, not the next five years.
We must continue to make STEM education a priority as it relates to our local and national education curricula. And STEM isn’t just about producing chemical or mechanical engineers. We’re talking about a STEM-literate citizenry: lawmakers who have a sound understanding of science; citizens who expect actions will be taken by government and business based in sound science, not emotion; teachers who teach science in a way that keeps young students interested; and journalists who understand STEM and can accurately report on STEM-related issues.
For example, according to a study done by Georgetown University, America isn’t producing enough students trained in the STEM fields to fill jobs in the future. If the nation is to keep up with the growing number of STEM jobs in order to keep pace with our global competitors. We need to invest in strengthening STEM education programs and our STEM pipeline throughout the country.
There is no time like right now for STEM education to be the most important driver for our education system today.
For more information on MATRIC’s perspective on STEM education, innovation or U.S. manufacturing, please contact MATRIC Communications.
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