The Future of CNC Manufacturing Education – CNC Manufacturing, Education Reform & Change Management News.

Ways to enhance teens’ interest in manufacturing

Posted by Bert Maes on February 10, 2010

Many believe the key to strengthening the economy and competing globally lies in fostering an innovative culture and educating  youth in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

According to this year’s Lemelson-MIT Invention Index, an annual survey that gauges Americans’ perceptions about invention and innovation, teens are enthusiastic about these subjects, with 77 percent interested in pursuing a STEM career.

Some tips for STEM education to engage youth ages 12 through 17:

  • Hands-On Learning outside the classroom is the best way to get them interested in STEM careers:

    • Field trips to places where they can learn about STEM (66%)
    • Access to places outside the classroom where they can go to build things and conduct experiments (53%).

  • Teachers play a powerful role in exciting teens about STEM

    • More than half of teens (55%) would be more interested in STEM simply by having teachers who enjoy the subjects they teach.
    • 43%said that role models in STEM fields is crucial in teens’ motivations and would increase their interest in learning about these areas.
    • A large majority of respondents wished they knew more about STEM in order to create or invent something (85%).
    • Many might be discouraged from pursuing professions in these areas due to a lack of understanding of the subjects or what people in these fields do, and the societal impact that STEM professionals have (51%). This further illustrates the need for teachers and mentors in these areas.

= We have to offer kids QUALITY: the best teachers and the best technology!



Another survey, conducted on behalf of the American Society for Quality shows similar findings:

  • Kids don’t know much about engineering — 44%.
  • They don’t feel confident enough in their math or science skills — 21% — to be good at it.



The US National Science Foundation projects a shortage of 70,000 engineers in 2010. However… Engineering is a strong career choice:

There will always be a need for future engineers – not just in existing companies, but also to start new companies that provide the world with the next great innovation. Manufacturing is the backbone to our economy. When manufacturing is strong, our economy is strong. Manufacturing is strong when it produces products and technology that help to improve lives.

* Engineers make a world of difference.

* Engineers are creative problem-solvers.

* Engineers help shape the future.

* Engineering is essential to our health, happiness, and safety.

* Engineering is a satisfying profession that involves creative ideas and teamwork.

* And don’t forget the good salaries! Earn more than the rest…



4 Responses to “Ways to enhance teens’ interest in manufacturing”

  1. I gave up on a potential carreer in science when I had problems with my HS Physics class. The teacher cared, but couldn’t teach. I didn’t figure that out until 20 years later when I started work at a chemical company as a technician. I got my BSc in Chemistry at 42. If I had stuck with it after HS I probably would have gone on to get a PhD. Please help keep the kids interested.

    • Bert Maes said

      Thank you so much, Patrick, for your comment.
      Real-life stories like yours give me even more fire and passion to get the schools focused on ‘STEM’ and to push the quality of education to a way higher level.
      And more and more I see that starts with the teacher: his/her commitment; his/her competence and his/her professionalism determine the performances and how inspired students get.
      Thank you so much, Patrick!
      Best regards,

  2. […] This article explains tips for educators, parents, and counselors to get students interested in STEM.This article is packed with a lot of information and statistics. Posted in: Counselors, Educators, STEM, Students […]

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