We know that there has been a decline in students electing to take up STEM subjects at school or university. To encourage students to take up careers in STEM fields, we have pulled together a short list of possibilities where an education in science, technology, engineering or mathematics may lead.
We know that less and less graduates from a STEM-based study program are choosing to become teachers, and qualified teachers for STEM subjects are in short supply. Becoming a teacher can be very fulfilling and rewarding, with the opportunity to share your passion for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. For students to excel and find a genuine interest in STEM subjects, it is important that there are teachers who are able to engage and encourage them to take an interest in STEM. A career in teaching is great for those who desire a lot of interaction and creativity in their working life, whilst also teaching students who will later fill the growing gap of qualified STEM graduates.
Most new innovations are the result of the efforts of research teams in STEM fields. Contributing to research is meaningful, as new technologies and protocols can benefit the masses. Did you know that the WiFi you’re probably using to read this post was developed by Australians? Other True Blue innovations and inventions include the sunshine harvester, blast glass, the black box, polymer banknotes, the ute, cervical cancer vaccine, extended wear contact lenses and baby seats. Other contributions have been made to advance technology in in-vitro fertilization, cochlear implants and the Buffalo fly trap, which is a method for cows to self-clean themselves of flies. Interestingly, Aerogard was subsequently invented and is now used instead! The Australian Powerhouse Museum provides an online guide to innovations which Australians are responsible for.
As a graduate in a STEM subject, you have the advantage of having specific knowledge which others may not have. Organisations often hire those trained in STEM fields to consult with them on different projects such as script writing for variety or drama programs, fact checking, writing content for magazines or newspapers, or offering expert advice. Consultants may also act as liaison person for a non-STEM consumer in order for them get an understanding from a STEM organisation (such as CSIRO – which is responsible for many of the previously mentioned inventions!).
With the rise of digital media in the last decade, communication of STEM related content has become more and more widespread. Social media, digital publications such as blog posts or e-zines and old-school hard copy media means there are a multitude of different ways that we can access information. Many of these sources are edited and published by those with some background in science, technology, engineering or mathematics. Though it’s not a traditional STEM career, many of those working in other STEM fields can greatly benefit from these communications.
Each of these career options offer many benefits, and all incorporate creativity, innovation and exploration day to day. Work experience in these fields can be extremely valuable for those wanting to know more about a specific career, and students can gain a greater understanding of what is involved in different STEM-based jobs. When the next batch of university open days are on, why not go along? Careers and job fairs are also a great way to collect information on STEM-based lines of work. You never know what you might find.