Yesterday, President Barack Obama hosted the second White House Science Fair, honoring more than 100 student winners from a broad range of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competitions from across the country. He used the opportunity to announce several new initiatives aimed at increasing the number of American students studying STEM subjects.
“When students excel in math and science, they help America compete for the jobs and industries of the future,” said Obama. “That’s why I’m proud to celebrate outstanding students at the White House Science Fair, and to announce new steps my administration and its partners are taking to help more young people succeed in these critical subjects."
According to a report released yesterday by the President’s Council of Advisors in Science and Technology, 1 million additional graduates with STEM degrees are needed over the next decade to fill the growing number of jobs that require these skills.
The president announced several new initiatives to increase the number of students studying STEM subjects including:
A $100 million investment by the National Science Foundation to improve undergraduate STEM education practices.
A new K-16 education initiative jointly administered by Department of Education and the National Science Foundation to improve math education.
Commitments from private sector groups and coalitions to do more to get students excited about STEM-related jobs.
New policies to recruit, support, retain and reward excellent STEM teachers.
A pledge of $22 million from philanthropic and private sector sources to support STEM subjects.