More STEM Girls Please!

Headline: The need for STEM workers climbs

STEM GirlsOkay, things are getting serious, and I’m still on the girl-power bandwagon.

In the last few years STEM has literally exploded across our national, regional, and local scenes, both in our education and workforce areas. A Georgetown University study reveals that occupations in STEM fields are the second-fastest growing in the nation. (Health occupations are first.) This raises the obvious question: Are we producing enough STEM workers to staff the workforce of expanding STEM industries?

You probably know the answer – No. Check out the numbers: The National Science Foundation  estimates that about five million people now work directly in STEM fields — just over 4 percent of our workforce. Think about how much of our economic innovation and productivity depends on that small percentage of workers.

How can we create the atmosphere, culture, and mindset that will involve more girls in STEM?

  1. Provide girls with constructive and safe feedback about their performance in STEM areas.
  2. Expose middle grades girls to female role models who work in STEM fields.
    Involve middle school girls in spatial skills training.
  3. Create a classroom that sparks curiosity and fosters long-term interest in STEM. 
  4. Focus on girls through informal education programs. 
  5. Maintain high energy and enthusiasm.

Read the entire article by Anne Jolly on MiddleWeb at http://www.middleweb.com/8223/more-stem-girls-please/

Resources

Why so Few? Women in Science,Technology,Engineering,and Mathematics http://www.aauw.org/files/2013/02/Why-So-Few-Women-in-Science-Technology-Engineering-and-Mathematics.pdf

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