“90% of top 10 emerging jobs are STEM-related,” said Dato’ Dr Mah Hang Soon, the Deputy Minister of Education I in Malaysia.
Digitalisation, automation and artificial technology is happening rapidly all around the world. With each decade, humans progress faster than the last.
In collaboration with the Maxis Scholarship programme (more info at the end of this article), we have listed 5 reasons science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education should be youth’s top priority in the 21st century. They clearly prove that education in STEM fields help the youth to be prepared to work in this Internet-driven world.
“Our goal is to continue supporting young Malaysian talent in building sustainable skillsets so that they can stay ahead and relevant in this fast-changing tech-driven landscape.”
- The future is in STEM jobs.
Our world economy is relying more and more on strong STEM education foundations. For example, the demand for healthcare jobs, which often need a strong STEM background, is anticipated to increase. It is expected that by 2028, employment in STEM occupations will rise by 8.8%, whereas non-STEM occupations will rise relatively less at 5%.
Additionally, professions that need a STEM background are more likely to pay well. STEM employees made an average salary of RM105,840, according to Salary Explorer.
- STEM education helps to develop the youth’s project management skills.
STEM courses, particularly those in technology and engineering, frequently include practical assignments. A simple robot, engine, or computer programme is frequently constructed over the course of several days.
Students are able to learn time management skills and how to divide huge projects into smaller manageable parts as part of their STEM curriculum. They will benefit from having that expertise throughout their lives, whether they are working on a project for the company or handling multiple works at once.
- STEM education encourages innovation and critical thinking among students.
Students who may not be interested in pursuing STEM occupations might also benefit from STEM education. Students may form mental habits that will help them thrive in any subject because of the emphasis on logical thought processes and problem-solving skills.
The STEM curriculum pushes undergraduate students to think critically and develop original answers. Students that acquire a top-notch STEM education are therefore better prepared to lead the next generation of innovators.
- Teamwork opportunities are often found in STEM syllabuses.
One of the most undervalued and crucial success factors is teamwork. In this community-driven world, collaborating in some capacity – often with a sizable and varied group of people – is a necessity for thriving in a working environment.
Teamwork is a common feature in STEM education, compared to other subjects. Students are actively building the interpersonal and teamwork skills they will need in the future, whether they are cooperating on an engineering challenge or lab research.
- The pandemic outbreak shows us how important technology skills are nowadays.
The COVID-19 pandemic has just emphasised how crucial technology is. It’s more important than ever for youths to be prepared to utilise and create technology, with increasing usages of Zoom, Telegram, Slack, and other platforms to interact with friends, family, and co-workers.
With the pandemic dying down, many businesses and companies continue to incorporate hybrid working environments which require some of these technical skills. By laying a solid STEM foundation, students will be prepared for success in the 21st century and beyond.
For the third year running, the Maxis Scholarship Programme returns to help young Malaysians achieve their academic aspirations and the opportunity to contribute positively to the nation.
The three categories of the Maxis scholarships are as follows:
Maxis Women in Tech Scholarship: Enabling outstanding young women from all backgrounds to pursue their undergraduate studies in different tech fields;
Maxis Tech Scholarship: Shaping top talent who are passionate about technology and innovation to pursue their undergraduate studies in various fields of technologies; and
Maxis Young Leaders Scholarship: Providing bright students a platform to propel them into a leadership trajectory, as well as champions of innovation and change.
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