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Why STEM Education is a Gateway for Entrepreneurship

Professionals pursuing a career in the STEM industry have numerous entrepreneurial characteristics: technical knowledge, a knack for problem solving and an analytical mindset, to name a few. STEM education fosters the entrepreneurial spirit through project-based curriculum that focus on the application of science, technology, engineering and mathematics studies to address real-world problems. These students, by nature, are driven and passionate about what they pursue and make great candidates for entrepreneurship. Here’s how STEM education opens the door for many entrepreneurs.

Logistics

Entrepreneurs wear many hats in their career and the same is true for students pursuing a logistics degree. The logistics field captures data to improve shipping and distribution processes by combining science and technology. For example, a student pursuing a career in logistics can work with GPS, radio frequency identifications (RFID) tags and bar codes to control recalls, returns, recycling and waste management. Logistics professionals are expected to switch gears between projects quickly and efficiently — a quality that will serve any entrepreneur well.

Electrical Engineering

STEM education has led to an unprecedented job growth rate in new engineering fields, particularly electrical engineering. That trend is projected to increase over the next decade, more so than non-STEM jobs. According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, STEM-focused fields are growing as much as 18 percent annually, compared to the national average for non-STEM fields at under 10 percent. Electrical engineering is responsible for new technological innovations such as grid decentralization and genetic engineering, and is rapidly spurring new opportunities for business ideas and development. With growth in the field projected to continue, there’s no doubt STEM education will lead students to entrepreneurial endeavors in this field.

Nanotechnology

Students in pursuit of a nanotechnology degree are apt at solving complicated problems in subjects such as mathematics, chemistry, computer science and engineering. For instance, nanotechnology students work with materials and devices on the molecular level to create more sustainable processes in industries such as health, manufacturing and environmental sustainability. By solving highly complex problems with intricate machines and tools, students in this field are prepared to solve some of the world’s largest problems. This demonstrates the same type of competitive edge entrepreneurs are best known for.

Big Data Analytics

STEM studies breed innovation. Colleges that offer big data analytics degrees or certifications prepare students to work in an exciting and fast-paced environment. Big data analytics is known for its abundance of jobs, lucrative pay scale and rapidly evolving landscape. The national average salary, as stated by Glassdoor, is over $60,000 and will continue to rise for the next decade. Big data analysts study an array of subjects, but focus primarily on statistics, data analysis and data insights. Big data analysts collect, process and analyze data sets of extreme size, diversity and complexity. They focus on evaluating processes to extract valid, useful and previously unknown information from data sources to identify new patterns and make strategic business decisions. Given the field’s growth and untapped potential, big data entrepreneurs are valuable to nearly every industry. All businesses generate data, and entrepreneurs can make sense of that data.

Entrepreneurs who start companies under the STEM umbrella have a bright and promising future. The demand for STEM jobs is growing exponentially every year, and students enticed by what a STEM career offers are great candidates to join the entrepreneurial world.

As the Director of Admissions at Florida Polytechnic University, Lauren Willison is responsible for supporting the Vice Provost of Enrollment in managing recruitment efforts. She develops and coordinates on- and off-campus events, as well as manages the campus visit experience.

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