Fewer than 15% of 10-14-year-olds in the UK currently aspire to pursue a career in science, leaving us with a potential skills shortage. As we celebrate 100 years since women got the vote, we will look at our gender imbalance within the area of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths). It is thought that addressing this imbalance could stop the potential shortfall in the future.
Some areas of STEM such as Medicine and Biology are dominated by women with more women going into this subject than men. Considering that the first women to be awarded a licence to practice medicine in the UK, Elizabeth Garret Anderson, received her qualification in 1865, we have come a long way.
However, in subjects like mathematics, engineering and computing the % of women in these areas is down in the low 20’s so here we have a long way to go to reach gender equality.
How can we get STEM to be considered by all?
To address these shortages, Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock gives talks across the world to a variety of audiences. Using her career as an example, she talks about what can be done with a degree in Physics. She talks about the power of having a crazy dream. To date Maggie has visited over ¼ of a million students and is seeing more all the time. She encourages all she speaks to and instils in them a “desire to aspire”. Maggie will discuss the techniques she uses to encourage all kids to “Reach for There Stars” whatever form their stars take, and fulfil their full potential despite the pitfalls they may encounter on the way.