The career outlook for STEM occupations continues to grow and improve every year. Although STEM education has been around for many years, it’s still a relatively new curriculum and one that’s being implemented more and more into the school’s academic program. Although the United States has been a leader in STEM fields, the nation’s goal is to make our students leaders at an international level, and they feel the best way is to encourage students to become more interested in STEM occupations.
What is STEM?
STEM is an academic curriculum that’s aimed at teaching students in four specific disciplines: science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The goal is not just to teach them in these disciplines but to educate them in an applied and interdisciplinary approach. How does this work? It’s actually rather simple. Rather than teach them by “book learning”, they teach them in a learning environment where they can apply these disciplines into a real-world situation or application.
Another thing that makes STEM unique and very beneficial is that it encourages students to use all four disciplines so they can become proficient in each of these areas. One student may be good at math but poor in science. In 2009, the Obama Administration implemented the Educate to Innovate program. The goal of this campaign was to encourage students to not just be proficient in one of these disciplines but to excel in them as a group. This is especially important because so many occupations today are based on STEM education.
Careers Available with STEM Education
One of the things that make STEM education so unique, important and beneficial is that STEM can be found in almost every area of our lives. It’s understandable why there are many careers available to students who have a strong background in and knowledge of STEM education. Here are some careers available with STEM education. The fields listed on top are the ones that most utilize STEM education and offer the most career occupations to STEM graduates.
- Life Sciences
- Computer Science
- Physical Sciences
- Mathematical Sciences
An interesting note is that the highest-paying STEM jobs are in the computer science field. Stem fields can build off each other because they’re so closely related, which is one reason why there are so many jobs available to STEM graduates.
Career Outlook for STEM Occupations
The number of graduates with technical majors is higher than the number of job openings, yet these professionals are still in demand. While the career outlook for STEM occupations will vary by the job and the field, overall STEM occupations have a very positive career outlook. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that employment in STEM-related occupations was expected to grow to more than 9 million by 2022.
The Bureau also reports that overall STEM employment should grow about 13 percent between 2012 and 2022. This number is higher than the predicted growth for all other occupations during that decade. Some of the specific jobs with the highest potential are technology jobs.
Related Resource: 30 Great Small Colleges for STEM Degrees
Despite more and more jobs now requiring at least a bachelor’s degree, many STEM occupations can be found with just a high school education or a couple years of post-high school education. This is one of many reasons why STEM occupations have such a good career outlook.