The U.S. is about to spend a small fortune on teaching science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM. The White House has promised $200 million a year to expand K-12 computer-science education. Several large tech firms have pledged another $300 million to the effort. That’s a good investment in theory, but the American education system is in no position to make the most of it.
Although many such robots are geared toward kids and STEM education, adults with limited coding knowledge can also have fun while learning coding with them. But the difference is that adults aren’t normally in daily classroom settings that teach coding like kids are.
CompTIA projects that 1.8 million new tech jobs will be created between 2014 and 2024, many of them requiring people with data and computer-science credentials. Retiring baby boomers will leave countless additional positions open. But colleges and universities are turning out only about 28,000 computer-science graduates with bachelor’s and master’s degrees per year, based on the most recent figures from 2015, according to the consulting firm Deloitte.
A $4.8 million grant from the National Science Foundation is helping the Association of American Colleges and Universities redesign how schools evaluate their STEM education efforts. The organization received $4.8 million to implement a new, interdisciplinary approach to STEM higher ed reform.
“[W]hen we look at CTE from a STEM perspective,” Gardner explained, “the things we want to see are better integration of STEM and CTE together. So many of the CTE pathways have STEM in them, but there's this very big separation between CTE and STEM in our schools.”
Given the rising interest in the potential benefits of single-sex education in the United States, particularly in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering, and math, Penn researchers Hyunjoon Park, Jere Behrman, and former Ph.D. student Jaesung Choi turned to a similar setting on the other side of the world: Seoul, South Korea, where two-thirds of high school students attend gender separate schools.
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.”
Maker faires, science camps, robotics competitions -- they’re often the go-to strategies for recruiting students to STEM careers. Kids who are passionate about STEM find them irresistible. But are they effective at winning over students who are on the fence about it?