The gender gap in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics is a known and stubborn quandary: While women make up roughly half of the college-educated U.S. workforce, they account for less than 30% of STEM jobs. To fix that, the Girl Scouts hopes to prepare at least 2.5 million girls for potential STEM-related jobs by 2025.
According to the 2016 report titled, “Minority and Female Employment in the Oil & Natural Gas and Petrochemical Industries, 2015-2035” by IHS Global prepared for API, “nearly 1.9 million direct job opportunities are projected through 2035 in the oil and natural gas and petrochemical industries” and “African Americans and Hispanics will account for over 80 percent of the net increase in the labor force from 2015 to 2035.”
Jobs in industries such as food services, transportation, and retail trade are at high risk of being automated, forcing workers to gain new skills to compete for well-paying jobs. From Google’s self-driving cars to Apple’s communication technology to Amazon’s retail model, automation is becoming more and more pervasive. As communities across the U.S. witness growing gaps between the skills that workers have and the ones that employers need, workers will need training.
S&P Global believes that a dual-pronged effort of increasing entry and retention of more women to the American workforce, particularly those professions traditionally filled by men, represents a substantial opportunity for growth of the world’s principal economy, with the potential to add 5%-10% to nominal GDP in just a few decades.
Given the lack of diversity and reports of hostility and discrimination, Congressperson Bobby Scott called on the Government Accountability Office to conduct a report that examines diversity, inclusion, hiring and discrimination in the tech industry. The GAO’s takeaway is that federal agencies need to improve their oversight of tech companies and diversity data collection methods.
The number of technology-based start-ups surged 47 percent in the last decade. These firms still account for a relatively small share of all businesses, but they have an outsized impact on economic growth, because they provide better-paying, longer-lasting jobs than other start-ups, and they contribute more to innovation, productivity, and competitiveness.
A massive influx of computer science majors in Colorado and across the country is overwhelming college and university classrooms as students opt to gain the skills required to fill nearly 500,000 open jobs in cybersecurity, data science and machine learning.
Given the accelerating pace of technological advances, there’s a good chance that a job that is easy to train for in a few months could be automated in a few years. The World Economic Forum suggests that 65 percent of children entering primary school today will ultimately end up working in jobs that don’t exist yet. There will be an increasing need to take our fundamental skills and adapt them to new settings.
Plenty of the industry’s best have gotten there without a college degree. But highly skilled talent is still one of the key ingredients to success for tech companies today and for the foreseeable future. Sourcing that talent is getting harder and harder, as the number of job openings increases while the number of qualified candidates decreases.
The technology-driven world in which we live is a world filled with promise but also challenges. Cars that drive themselves, machines that read X-rays, and algorithms that respond to customer-service inquiries are all manifestations of powerful new forms of automation.