Lawmakers back STEM marketing campaign

The American Press

<div class="popup_content_wrapper"><div class="popup_content_under_toolbar article_content" data-role="article_content"><div class="article_viewer ArticleViewer text use-3d ltr" data-role="article-viewer" data-olive-control="ArticleViewer"><div class="animation-wrapper"><div class="align-wrapper offset-wrapper"><div class="zoom-wrapper"><div class="article" lang="en" xml_lang="en" data-view-mode="text"><div class="Content"><p class="indent">Louisiana lawmakers have agreed to inject dollars into a STEM-related marketing campaign to encourage students — particularly young women — to pursue more careers in science, technology, engineering and math.</p><p class="indent">The decision was made during the inaugural Louisiana Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (LaSTEM) Advisory Council’s statewide summit earlier this month. The summit focused on bringing together lawmakers, educators and business leaders from across the state to discuss the planning and creation of Regional STEM Centers.</p><p class="indent">LaSTEM is under the umbrella of the Board of Regents and is tasked with coordinating and overseeing the creation, delivery and promotion of STEM education programs; increase student interest and achievement in the fields of STEM; ensure the alignment of education, economic development, industry and workforce needs; and increase the number of women who graduate from a postsecondary institution with a STEM degree or credential.</p><p class="indent">Data from the National Science Foundation show women earn about half of all science and engineering degrees and earn the majority of bachelor’s degrees in the biological, agricultural, psychological and social sciences.</p><p class="indent">The problem arises in computer sciences, engineering and physical sciences such as chemistry and physics, where women respectively earn 18, 20.1 and 38.7 percent of bachelor’s degrees.</p><p class="indent">Gender gaps in STEM fields are not limited to education, either. As the U.S. Department of Commerce reports, women made up 47 percent of the U.S. workforce in 2017 but only occupied 24 percent of STEM jobs</p><p class="indent">Hopefully, this marketing campaign will help change that.</p><p class="indent">During the summit, lawmakers agreed to use federal aid funding often used to promote career and technical education for high school students for the regional marketing campaign.</p><p class="indent">The campaign will be a joint venture between the Louisiana Department of Education and the Louisiana Community and Technical College System.</p><p class="indent">The designated $300,000 will be used to emphasize STEM programs offered at nearby colleges, jobs available when students complete their schooling and what those jobs would pay.</p><p class="indent">The editorial board applauds the initiative’s goal to give much-needed attention to STEM-related fields and encouraging young women to purse such fields. Women deserve equal representation in the sciences and projects like this can help close the gap.</p></div></div></div></div></div></div></div></div>””STEM Marketing CampaignAmerican Press

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