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We define STEM education as the preparation of students in competencies and skills in the four disciplines (science, technology, engineering, and math). A successful STEM education provides students with science, math, and engineering/technology in sequences that build upon each other and can be used with real-world applications. STEM education creates critical thinkers, increases science literacy, and enables the next generation of innovators. Innovation leads to new products and processes that sustain our economy. This innovation and science literacy

Along with having a technical foundation, prospective STEM workers must have strong thinking and communication skills. “People focus so much on math and science that they often ignore these skills,” Holm says. Ability to consider problems in different ways and then being able to explain a solution clearly is essential for success in STEM occupations. Thinking skills. Critical and creative thinking help STEM workers in problem solving to detect mistakes, gather relevant information, and understand how different parts or systems interact with each other. STEM workers also need thinking skills to develop innovative, cost-effective solutions. depends on a solid knowledge base in the STEM areas.

It is clear that most jobs of the future will require a basic understanding of math and science-10-year employment projections by the U.S. Department of Labor show that of the 20 fastest growing occupations projected for 2014, 15 of them require significant mathematics or science preparation. It is imperative that as a nation, we make STEM education a top priority. We have a lot of work to do.