According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were approximately 8.6 million STEM jobs in May 2015, with the highest jobs in software development, user support, and systems analysts. Despite the high number of jobs, the lack of skilled workers in the labor force allow these positions to go unfilled. To make matters worse, the existing STEM workforce lacks diversity among women and minorities, not representing the emerging workforce of women and underrepresented groups.
To close the opportunity divide, cities like Boston are looking to strategic partnerships between employers and workforce and talent development programs to connect underserved youth with the work-based learning experiences that exist in their own community and help equip them with the skills and real-world experience they need to succeed in them.
When we ask young people “What do you want to be when you grow up?” the answers generally include—doctor, professional athlete, musician, actress. These are careers that we see every day in movies, TV, and real life.