Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workers drive our nation’s innovation and competitiveness by generating new ideas, new companies and new industries. However, U.S. businesses frequently voice concerns over the supply and availability of STEM workers. Over the past 10 years, growth in STEM jobs was three times as fast as growth in non-STEM jobs. STEM workers are also less likely to experience joblessness than their non-STEM counterparts. Science, technology, engineering and mathematics workers play a key role in the sustained growth and stability of the U.S. economy, and are a critical component to helping the U.S. win the future.
- In 2010, there were 7.6 million STEM workers in the United States, representing about 1 in 18 workers.
- STEM occupations are projected to grow by 17.0 percent from 2008 to 2018, compared to 9.8 percent growth for non-STEM occupations.
- STEM workers command higher wages, earning 26 percent more than their non-STEM counterparts.
- More than two-thirds of STEM workers have at least a college degree, compared to less than one-third of non-STEM workers.
- STEM degree holders enjoy higher earnings, regardless of whether they work in STEM or non-STEM occupations.