Learn how STEM can launch a lifelong appreciation for learning

One of the great things about being in K-12 is we get to be the start of the on-ramp. Students are naturally curious. If they don’t get these authentic experiences with science in elementary school, they can lose their love of STEM. So it’s vital that we have teachers who... create programs in their classrooms that help students maintain their natural interest in STEM and continue on to become our future workforce.” -Jennifer Tyrell, ORISE Education program manager

The need for a STEM-capable workforce has increased dramatically in recent years. According to the National Science Board, the number of U.S. jobs that require substantial science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education has grown by nearly 34 percent in the last decade. More jobs than ever require at least a bachelor’s degree-level of STEM knowledge and experience, and millions of technical jobs need people who have STEM knowledge with or without a degree.

A career in science can span a variety of focus areas that extend beyond the perception that science is only conducted in a laboratory. Hear what a few scientists—from students to advanced researchers—say about how a focus in STEM has made a difference in their career.

Linda Lawhorn, Transportation Specialist
Strata-G

Sara Lipshutz, Ph.D. Student
University of Tennessee

Tony Grappin, Core Engineer Specialist
Consolidated Nuclear Security

Roxana Beach, Professor
Pellissippi State Community College

Jordan Bush, Ph.D. Student
University of Tennessee

Jerome Gnoose, Alternate Waste Certification Official
Edgewater

Wayne Baxter, Registered Nurse/Paramedic
REAC/TS

Tom Young, Safety Engineer
Y-12 National Security Complex

Lauren McGraw, Graduate Research Assistant
University of Tennessee

Rachel Harken, Science Writer
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Bob Hettich, Senior Research Staff Member
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Dan Ciarlette, Senior Solutions Architect
Oak Ridge National Laboratory