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Addressing the STEM Workforce Challenge: Missouri

BHEF Publication

While states and the federal government have put efforts in place to increase the size of the workforce trained in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) to meet innovation demands, there continues to be a nationwide shortage of students who are interested in and prepared for such careers. Missouri is no exception to this problem, one which threatens to impact the country’s ability to compete in the global economy.

Findings of Missouri STEM research brief:

  • The percent of Missouri 12th graders with both interest in and skills for success in STEM is low.  
  • Missouri’s African American students are far less likely than their peers to have the math proficiency necessary to pursue STEM education.
  • Missouri’s female students are underrepresented in STEM interest and math proficiency.
  • Few students enrolled in Missouri’s two-year college programs are academically ready for STEM.
  • Many math-proficient Missouri students already enrolled in four-year colleges are not interested in STEM.
  • Many Missouri students are on the edge of both math proficiency and STEM interest.

This brief is part of the BHEF STEM Workforce and Policy Brief Series, which focuses on important dimensions of the education and workforce misalignment challenge facing the United States. Through this series, BHEF will further analyze 10th and 12th grade student STEM interest and math proficiency, as well as postsecondary enrollment using a longitudinal data set provided by BHEF member organization ACT. These analyses will provide fresh insights into the nature of the STEM challenge and explore unique solutions to these challenges.



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