Updated: May 12, 2020
STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. This article will explain how STEM education access is limited based on school socioeconomic status and how we at Prodigy Prep are seeking to bridge this gap in our local Brownsville community.
4 reasons why STEM education matters
1. STEM Produces More Jobs: Stem jobs will experience a 17 percent growth over a ten-year period when compared to non-stem careers.
2. STEM workers can expect higher salaries: According to economic and job growth research, STEM majors can expect to earn 46 percent more money on average and are less vulnerable to job losses when compared to non-stem careers.
3. STEM Research: STEM majors leads to major breakthrough in science and technology research which leads to general societal growth and expansion
4. Critical Thinking and Problem-Solving Skills: STEM education allows students to become critical thinkers, learning how to approach and solve problems. STEM education allows students to focus on questions about the world around them then find viable solutions. This enables critical thinking skills, generating creative ideas and leads them to make informed decisions about solving problems. This is a skill set students can use throughout their lives.
Low Income Children and barriers to STEM education
Although STEM education is very important not all students have equal access to STEM education. Research shows that low income students are underrepresented in STEM training, degrees, and classes; which deters them out of higher paying occupations.
Many of the disparities and barriers to entrance from low income students which prevent students from entering into STEM career pathways start at grade school. For example, many low-income families cannot afford a computer or internet access.
This digital inequality creates achievement disparities, leading to fewer lower income households in STEM programs. School education quality is also affected by a neighborhood's tax revenue. Schools receiving fewer resources from taxes tend to have limited access to monetary resources. This manifests as a poorer quality and education which leads to limiting students' opportunities and career choices.
How Prodigy Prep is seeking to solve the Stem education gap in the Brownsville community
Brownsville community. In Brownsville, 28% of residents live in poverty, compared with 20% of NYC residents. Additionally. Brownsville’s unemployment rate is higher than the citywide average of 9%. Rent burdened households pay more than 30% of their income for housing and many have difficulty affording food, clothing, transportation and health care. Fifty-seven percent of Brownsville residents are rent burdened, this leaves little room to afford school supplies.
1. Close the skills gap by providing quality educational services which guide students to academic success. With innovative teaching techniques, qualified instructors, and quality learning materials, we help students strengthen their foundations and improve their skills, with guaranteed results.
2. Provide resources needed for Stem education: Prodigy helps provide essential school supplies like computers to low income neighborhoods which is needed for Stem education.