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What is STEM and why is it important?

What is STEM and why is it important?

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What is STEM and why is it important?

We’re going to assume that if you’re reading, you might have a clue about STEM. But just in case, let’s start with the basics: What is STEM and why is it important?

What is STEM?

STEM is an acronym that stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths. Sometimes, you might see an extra ‘A’ or ‘M’ thrown in there like ‘STEAM’ or ‘STEMM’. They stand for ‘Arts’ and ‘Medicine’.

The concept of STEM actually started in the US as a way to combat low student participation rates that we’re still seeing today. It all started with a report that found a correlation between people employed in science and tech jobs and that country’s economic prosperity and the innovation of world issues.

Did you know? You could have been reading this article on When the acronym was first invented by educators at the American National Science Foundation in 2001, they almost went with ‘SMET’. Fortunately it was changed to ‘STEM’ as it had a better ring to it.

[Tweet “Science and tech jobs increase economic prosperity and the innovation of world issues.”]


Why is it important to study STEM?

It’s a widely reported fact that 75% of all future jobs will require STEM skills and knowledge. So, if you’re planning on being employed in the future, having STEM skills will widen your job opportunities exponentially.

That doesn’t mean you’ll have to be a mathematician, or a scientist to survive. STEM skills are applicable to just about every industry. You could work in environmental conservation using maths skills, or become a fashion designer using the latest tech. Check out our profiles page for more career possibilities!

“Science and innovation are recognised internationally as key for boosting productivity, creating more and better jobs, enhancing competitiveness and growing an economy.”

– ‘Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics: Australia’s Future’, Chief Scientist, Sept. 2014.

On a wider scale, STEM skills contribute to economic growth. Take Science for example. A report from Australia’s Chief Scientist estimates that 14% of Australia’s economic activity comes from careers in Science – including a direct contribution of $185 billion per year!

[Tweet “14% of Australia’s economic activity comes from Science careers – $185 billion per year!”]


What are students saying about STEM?

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Become a published writer with the UNSW Bragg Student Science Writing Prize
The making of Careers with STEM: Maths magazine

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Free Sobolewski, Maths undergrad

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”2/3″][vc_column_text]“All throughout high school teachers will try to sell you on a career field based on employment prospects, starting salaries, and job security. Of course, careers in STEM have all that, but there’s more to it. Being STEM students, we are constantly immersed in the latest technological innovations, and spend our time searching for the answers to questions that haven’t necessarily been asked yet.

“Moreover, Albert Einstein once said; “Pure mathematics is, in its way, the poetry of logical ideas.” It is often overlooked that STEM underpins nature, art, architecture, music, dance, and even provides insight and understanding into the unpredictability of human emotion – just look to the golden ratio, chaos theory, fractals.”[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_separator][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”2/3″][vc_column_text]

“Studying STEM is the opportunity to be able to try to grasp the dynamic world that lies all around us. It gives us the chance to participate in the worldwide initiative to attempt to understand the universe in all of its complexity.”

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Wayne Cawthorne, Biochemistry student

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Vanessa Pirotta, PhD student

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“There are so many exciting career paths in STEM. My STEM career path has enabled me to combine my passion for the marine environment with cutting edge technology for whale conservation.”


What is STEM and why is it important to you? Let us know in the comments!


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3 Responses

  1. The craze for STEM Learning has now significantly increased in young students. The universities are coming up with various STEM Learning Programs in collaboration with other institutions & researchers.

    The STEM Learning Ecosystems have a vast potential to teach the young students in masses. Every year students are applying for these programs in a big number because of the real-time practice and to represent their talents.

    Occupations in STEM-related professions are probably the quickest developing and best paid of the 21st century, and they frequently have the best potential for work development. The most ideal approach to guarantee future achievement and life span is to ensure that the students are well versed in these subjects.

    Building a strong STEM Foundation through a balanced educational plan is the most ideal approach to guarantee that understudies are presented to math, science, and innovation all through their instructive profession.

  2. I’m currently participating in a STEM program at Academic city University and it’s really beneficial

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