As part of world children’s day our experts discuss why there has never been a more important time to create – and invest – in opportunities that empower the students of today, and tomorrow, to excel in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics).
While the events of 2020 have dealt difficult blows across the globe due to the ripple effects of Covid-19, they have also highlighted the importance of our science, technology, engineering, and mathematics providers, whose skills impact and preserve our well-being.
Why STEM is so important
It is the knowledge and expertise of these highly educated STEM professionals that is helping us navigate through the unprecedented challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic. The importance of a robust educational system supporting and encouraging excellence in science, technology, engineering and maths has never been more directly linked to the health of the country or the health of our economy.
A strong STEM education encourages the development of analytical minds. Minds that think critically are trained to solve problems and are better able to contribute to a stronger, innovation-based UK economy. It is those employed in STEM that have given us the track and trace system, have developed a test for the virus and have been working ceaselessly to create a vaccine. It is also the STEM fields which have provided valuable forecasting software facilitating pandemic strategy and response. Numerous engineering companies – large and small – have repurposed their machines to support the ongoing fight against the virus.
First steps to growing STEM in the UK
Looking long term, academic – and ultimately career – success relies upon the provision of high quality teachers, providing lessons with strong engaging subject matter. Before we can hope to improve STEM education the UK needs more teachers with demonstrated, proven knowledge in STEM, and we need to provide them with better resources to ensure that they have the necessary tools to integrate STEM in their lesson plans.
In London, around 2,500 individuals, employed by various companies ranging from multi-national companies to SMEs, in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors, volunteer their time through the STEM Ambassadors programme. The programme encourages these individuals to work with local schools to run activities designed to excite young people about STEM and encourage them to consider STEM careers and qualifications.
Importantly, STEM is not just for those with advanced degrees; over half of STEM jobs are currently held by individuals who don’t hold bachelor’s degree. This illustrates that STEM is a field offering students an increased opportunity for career success at nearly all levels of educational attainment.
There may never have been a more important time to create and invest in opportunities that empower our students to learn about STEM. When our students are given the option to explore STEM, our job market and economy benefit.
At Energy Technology and Control we understand that world children’s day is an import way to focus minds on the STEM experts of tomorrow. If you’d like to talk to a member of our team please do get in touch.