Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) careers play an important role in Indiana’s economic vitality by fostering innovation and a competitive advantage in the global market. Yet as a recent workforce study released by Hire Up and TechPoint points out, there is a vast misalignment in skills that will continue to result in a lack of qualified workers if not addressed by employers, educators and workers.
“We have the opportunity to make talent – our most precious resource – a competitive advantage here,” said Mike Langellier, president and CEO of TechPoint. “But, we are going to need innovative, well-designed programs along with tight feedback loops and effective collaboration between employers, educators, employees, and other stakeholders.”
As an Indiana-based ISO 13485 certified contract manufacturer, our Genesis Plastics Welding leadership team has taken a stance to combat the STEM skills shortage by encouraging and recognizing students with an interest in the engineering field.
“As an employer in the advanced manufacturing sector, we’re in a strong position to ignite the spark and passion for STEM jobs in the future generation by eradicating the misconceptions of what advanced industries are like today,” said Tom Ryder, president and CEO of Genesis. “We take any opportunity we get to give students an inside look at what a job in advanced manufacturing entails and find they’re often surprised at how high-tech, cutting edge and exciting it is to have a career in the STEM industry.”
Tearing down outdated ideas of what STEM careers such as advanced manufacturing are really like is only the beginning of the education process that must happen in order to close the STEM skills gap.
“Through our internships and other training programs, we can offer hands-on training that students won’t learn in a classroom,” said Ryder. “The more Indiana employers collaborate with educators and supplement traditional learning, the more we are investing in the future workforce and helping these industries continue to thrive.”