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More STEM Anecdotes and Resources

Adding to last week’s post about STEM, here are other encouraging observations on STEM education: Boy Scouts now can get a Merit Badge in CAD. This is literally an observation; from the display of merit badges at a grandson’s Eagle Scout ceremony:


And another grandson chooses the engineering path: Puyallup junior delves into rocket science.

While shopping I’ve seen “toys” and science kits that would encourage youngsters to learn about STEM, most recently in the gift shop at the aquarium in Honolulu:


Other information about STEM:

DiscoverE (formerly the National Engineers Week Foundation), encouraging students towards STEM

(BTW, this is also the site for finding engineering sites to check out while you are on vacation.)

It’s Not a Skills Gap Automation World

The STEM Crisis Is a Myth IEEE Spectrum

Is There a Skills Gap? It’s Less Clear-Cut Than You Think

The Skills Crisis and Retooling the Lost Generation

Are Salaries, Not Skills, Keeping Automation Jobs Unfilled? Automation World

The Manufacturer’s Agenda: Recruiting Students to Manufacturing: The Ground Game, Industry Week

7 things noncontrol people should know about control engineers Control Engineering

Excerpt: The U.S. government has more than 50 job codes for IT professionals but NONE for control engineers.

Deloitte 2011 Boiling point? The skills gap in U.S. manufacturing


Changing nature of work

The skills gap problem comes into sharper focus when considering the changing nature of manufacturing work during the past five years. Many manufacturers have redesigned and streamlined production lines while increasingly automating processes. While some remaining job roles will require less technically skilled workers, ironically, these trends and innovations actually demand more skilled workers, such as maintenance engineers. This changing nature of work is consistent across industries and companies of different size, and can make it difficult for workers to keep up with employment demands.

Goodbye, low-education manufacturing jobs; hello, high-education manufacturing jobs.

–Carl Henning