Community / STEM Watch

New York City, NY

“By 2016, the 10 fastest growing occupations in New York State will require STEM Competencies.” – from the Empire State learning Network website.
Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson, president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, referred to America’s shortage of STEM talent as a “quiet crisis.” With ever-increasing urgency, the United States has to focus its attention and resources of educating its students and re-educating its educators to increase proficiency in science and math. As part of Rensselaer’s commitment to addressing issues as they pertain to STEM education, Dr. Jackson and the Rensselaer team created the Empire State STEM Learning Network to move from opening the dialogue about advancing STEM education to creating a community of STEM education. Dr. Jackson reports that according to an article in Fortune magazine, most American corporations are, in a noticeable way, becoming technology companies. The problem is that statistics indicate that between 2004 and 2007, the number of Computer Science degrees earned in the U.S. decreased by more than 25%. Unfortunately, U.S. businesses are responding to the shortage of domestic talent with STEM competencies by hiring talent from abroad. Empire State STEM Learning Network is committed to producing students who have STEM competencies, critical thinking skills, problem-solving abilities and the proclivity to apply learned science and math concepts and techniques to real-world problems. Empire State STEM Learning Network is just that – a network of STEM professionals, corporate partners and educational institutions who have opened a dialogue about the problem and who are actively working to create solution for student so that they can be better prepared to compete globally.