I was recently reading an article from Elearning (www.2learning.com) where it states that “only 15% of college students (United States) are in Engineering and Science, where many of the high-tech jobs reside. That number compares to 50% in China, 67% in Singapore, and 47% in France.” I found this alarming as the future economy depends upon technological advancements, inventions, applications, and products. I also found this relative to a previous article that I wrote about students learning to code software as all of these devices need instructions (software) that tell the device what to do.
In addition, the article stated that “Leland Melvin, head of NASA’s education programs and head of the President’s STEM council, said that there are 1 million jobs that can’t be filled because people lack the requisite skills in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).” It seems logical then to encourage students to study STEM skills at younger ages and to provide them with unique STEM courses to explore the future. In fact, there might be a need to develop stronger STEM programs in our public schools. It might even mean a shift in how school programs are offered.
I have seen many independent private schools build new science buildings in the past decade to tackle this need, and I am noticing that the local public high schools in my town are offering a pre-medical type program, an international baccalaureate, and a technology magnet school program for qualified applicants. While we are moving in the correct direction, it appears that we have a long way to go.
If you have some time, please share what unique STEM skills are being taught at your school.