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Washington Post Virtual Program Focuses on Why Diversity Is Crucial to Filling Future STEM Jobs

Posted on Tuesday, December 13, 2022

The Washington Post and Abbott Laboratories presented a 90-minute virtual program recently on Diversity in STEM Education.  What could be more timely as ARCS takes a hard look at this topic through the lens of the new Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Standing Committee?  Linda Burke, DEI Committee Chair, and other national chairs share and recommend this program for ARCS members, scholars, and supporters.

ARCS Foundation advances science and technology in the United States by providing financial rewards to academically outstanding US citizens studying to complete degrees in science engineering and medical research.

Our mission demands that we undertake this hard look, as the Washington Post program tells us that one million new STEM workers will be needed in the next couple of years.  Without attracting students currently underrepresented in STEM, we cannot as a country fulfill that need.  Sixty-five percent (65%) of current students will go into jobs that do not currently exist!   These data are exciting but tremendously challenging for achieving our ARCS mission.

The program explores these challenges and offers solutions for success.  Those solutions rely heavily on encouraging STEM introduction into early education, mentoring minority students, and internships in the field.  The ARCS national DEI Committee is already exploring developing a program of bonus awards to encourage mentoring of K-12 and undergraduate students by our current scholars and scholar alums still studying for their degrees.

Those interviewed in the program are thoughtful, articulate, and passionate.  The last segment is especially pertinent and inspiring.  It features Valerie Sheares Ashby, President of UMBC (University of Maryland at Baltimore County), a historically black university that excels in STEM.  You will be glad that you spent the time watching the program.  The link is below.

The Washington Post YouTube segment:  "Diversity in STEM"