The image of manufacturing is no longer the boring, dirty environment it once was. We must tout the advancements to fill the skills gap.
Evidence of the shortage of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) talent in the United States is plentiful. However, in an effort to stop immigration of high-skilled STEM workers, left wing advocates argue that there is no shortage. A new twist to their argument is to claim that STEM graduates do not always go into STEM fields and therefore are not in short supply. This reasoning falls apart rapidly. First, the U.S. Census Bureau definition of STEM graduates and workers, which is used to make this argument, includes psychology and social science majors, which are not what most people think of when considering STEM occupations. But second, it ignores the glaringly obvious point that in today’s technology-driven economy, all sectors and industries-not just those classified as STEM fields-have a growing need for STEM talent.
The Innovation Enterprise. Ayah Bdeir and her five-year-old company, littleBits, have become stars of the maker movement by emphasizing simplicity and ease-of-use. The company, which makes color-coded, interchangeable parts that snap together to form ready-to-use electronic circuits, says it is all about “democratizing hardware.” littleBits’ customers—from children to other makers—use the company’s little electronic Lego-like parts to bring intelligence to everyday items, like a door bell that sends a text when it’s rung.