Why is STEM Important? Why Do We Keep Talking About it?
Updated: Mar 1, 2019
Why is STEM Important?
STEM is important because our world depends on it. The economy, our general well-being—it’s all backed by science, technology, engineering, and math.
Thus, when we refer to STEM, it’s not just coding and lab coats. It’s the underpinning of manufacturing, food production, health care, and so much more that frankly, we might take for granted, but surely can’t live without.
You might be wondering then, if STEM is so important, so necessary, then why do we have to keep talking about it? You might be saying, “This is the 25th blog post you’ve written that features “STEM” in the title…we get it, STEM is important, so let’s move on.“
And therein lies the rub. The collective “we” haven’t yet “gotten it.”
If we had, then there wouldn’t 2.4 million STEM jobs projected to go unfilled this year. There wouldn’t be a severe underrepresentation of women in STEM fields. There wouldn’t be just as much of an underrepresentation of minorities. (Here are a few STEM education stats that tell quite the story.)
There wouldn’t be the need to constantly put STEM in the spotlight or on proving grounds, or in this 26th STEM-related blog post if these massive gaps didn’t exist.
But they do. And have for years. So here we are.
A lack of STEM education is to blame, but let me explain.
Why is STEM Education Important?
To start, consider this:
We need to first educate in order to educate.
I’m not trying to be cute or clever. But in the process of writing this post, I realized there are two different forms of “STEM education” we need to be talking about here:
“STEM education” with regards to students in school, and the teaching of STEM in the classroom, but also, a STEM education in terms of you, me, parents, teachers; all of us learning more, and becoming more educated on the importance of STEM.
Why have I just put your brain in a pretzel? It’s not intentional by any means.
The point I’m trying to make is that if we aren’t educated on the importance of STEM, we won’t push our kids to become educated in STEM.