Thats a great article Cabe, It really feels nice to see young kids participating so passionately in the tech world. They way these kids are contributing in these fields in such a young age is truly worth the appreciation.
Cabe, it is good to see people getting involved in STEM at earlier levels of school. Our schooll district has a very active program. That makes sense, since a lot of people around here have STEM jobs and backgrounds.
On the other hand, the comments about the number of people needed in STEM jobs is not really clear. If you ask industry they will say stupid things. For example, Steve Jobs famously said he needs 30,000 engineers over the next years. I worked in the space program, which is not known for its efficiency. We designed and built multiple spacecraft at a time with a group of 2,500 people. We had subcontractors, but some of our people were working on subcontracts as well. Each of these systems were orders of magnitude more complex than anything Apple has ever done. It is hard to get a real number out of industry these days.
While there will certianly be good STEM jobs, I have seen research recently showing that these are plenty of people in the US to fill them. We should keep improving our educational system in this area, but the fear of massive shortages should not be the driver.
Nice story, Cabe. In an country with stubbornly high unemployment, with too many jobs that don't offer sufficient wages to support workers (fast food jobs pay less than $9.00 per hour), I would think there would be a rush to STEM jobs.
California State University, Chico was the first school in California to offer an ABET-accredited degree program in mechatronic engineering. Now its California Mechatronics Center works with industry on machinery, robotics, and surveillance vehicles.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.