How to find a job you love in STEM

how to find a job you love in STEM

How to find a job you love? It’s as easy as STEM + X!

STEM + X is the key to how to find a job you love. Study STEM to foster future-ready skills, then add your X factor to create a unique career you’ll love. Your X, or your passion, can be anything! It could be a passion for the environment, or a drive to help people. Maybe fashion, gaming or sport is more your thing. We spoke to Google’s Director of Engineering, Alan Noble, to find out more about Google’s mantra: CS + X.

Computer Science + X

From Wi-Fi to the cochlear implant, to technology startups like Atlassian, Australia has a long history of creation and innovation. While most of these innovations have a strong component or even foundation in computer science, and while computer science careers are the number of computer science (CS) graduates in Australia is in decline.

So how do we turn this around? We need to start by broadening the understanding of what computer science careers can lead to. Computer science (CS) has a strong foundation in maths and science – but it’s not just about code and programming. At its core, it’s about computational thinking and problem-solving – looking at the big challenges the world is facing and designing solutions to solve them. It’s about combining CS with other disciplines and discovering new insights and solutions on every scale.

CS + X (where “X” is your passion) is not new. It has a long history in the sciences: CS + physics = computational physics, CS + chemistry = computational chemistry, CS + biology = bioinformatics, etc.

But it doesn’t stop with science. “X” can be virtually anything. For example, CS + retail = online shopping; CS + finance = “fin tech”, think online banking, personal finance management, etc; CS + music = products like Pandora; CS + health = devices like fitbit, and so on. The opportunities in computer science careers are endless.

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“At its core, CS is about problem-solving – looking at the big challenges the world is facing.”

artificial intelligence
Tamina Pitt

Computer Science + Create social change = Google STEP intern, Tamina Pitt

Tamina Pitt wants to use her tech skills to change the world. She’s recently learned to flex her tech skills at Google, making an app as their Summer Trainee Engineering Program intern. In future, Tamina wants to use her tech skills to benefit the Indigenous community.

Science + Build healthy communities = Sport psychologist, Luke Stutter

Exercise science and psychology are less chalk and cheese than you might think. Luke Stutter is making a stunning career out his dual degree from QUT.

Maths + Be creative = Data analyst and TV presenter, Lily Serna

Lily Serna, Careers with STEM: Maths magazine 2018 cover star, has managed to create an unlikely career path as both Atlassian data analyst and SBS TV presenter. Find out why Lily loves maths, and why she thinks the phrase “I’m not good at maths” should be banned.

Engineering + Solve global problems = Student engineer, Oliver Nicholls

Oliver Nicholls has his fair share of accolades. He’s a winner of the BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Awards in the Engineering Category, and also took home the Gordon E. Moore Award at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF), valued at US $75,000. Read more about Oliver Nicholls’ window washing robot that improves safety and accessibility.

Oliver Nicholls BHP awards OH&S robotics BHP Science and Engineering Awards

Still looking for ideas on how to find a job you love? View our People page to find more STEM + X ideas, and career role models!

We hope that this guide will inspire you to think big and to take up the challenge to solve the world’s big problems. By combining CS with your passion, your “X”, anything is possible.

– Alan Noble, Director of Engineering, Google Australia

STEM Contributor

Author: STEM Contributor

This article was written by a STEM Contributor for Careers with STEM. To learn more, please visit our contact page.