Pushing the Boundaries in STEM Careers



It’s that time of year again when high school seniors from around the country are frantically completing their college applications and deciding what academic paths to pursue. STEM — science, technology, engineering and math — majors are an interesting option for students both entering campus for the first time and for those reconsidering their dream job.


Most are attracted to STEM careers by the possibility of literally changing the world with their discoveries. Others are finding new opportunities for growth and career advancement that can bring a real sense of accomplishment, as well as provide a good income potential.

What’s the Draw?

A career in STEM can be fulfilling in unexpected ways. Meghan Duffy is program manager for Grace Hopper, a tech education program for women based in New York City, and named after Admiral Grace Hopper, a pioneer in computer science. Duffy sees STEM-related careers as life changing.


She explains, “Don’t be fooled by your own personal narratives, like ‘I’m not a math person.’ In reality, computational thinking and the scientific method are ways of thinking that can be acquired over time. It’s important to understand that technology impacts how we behave and think, so being able to actively build and shape it is a big responsibility — and an amazing opportunity that isn’t limited to certain segments of culture or gender.”


STEM jobs are also among the highest paying and can be a springboard for advancement. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were nearly 8.6 million STEM jobs in May 2015, and 93 percent of STEM occupations had wages above the national average. In fact, the national average wage for STEM occupations was nearly double the national average wage for non-STEM occupations.


STEM careers particularly appeal to those who possess a passion for making a difference. People who are drawn to problem-solving can find topics that are important to them and apply their critical thinking skills to push the boundaries of what’s possible.

How to Launch Your STEM Career

Those just starting their education should build their portfolios and professional network during their college years so they stay current with the job market. “The STEM landscape is constantly changing,” says Duffy. “Employers will expect you to be able to update and demonstrate your skills regularly. Make sure your program provides plenty of opportunities to apply what you’ve learned.”


For many women engineers, reentry/returnship programs offer training in STEM subjects that allow them to shift their concentration to new or different career paths by updating their skills and returning to the workforce after devoting time to their families.


Today’s reality is that companies need technical expertise at multiple levels. Here at Turtle & Hughes, we are always interested in speaking with dedicated professionals and new graduates who want to join our team and drive business strategy while making a difference for our customers.


A career in STEM can be very rewarding for those with the passion to succeed. Even college students who don’t major in a STEM field should consider STEM subjects as part of their degree program. They are likely to discover they have talents they didn’t know they had, talents that they can then apply to changing the world.


For more information about career opportunities at Turtle & Hughes, please contact:

Erin Turtle

Recruitment Specialist

732-574-3600, ext. 3317

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