Career hardware engineers research, design and develop computing components (e.g. microprocessors, networks, routers) to create faster, better and more powerful computing systems.
In addition to the need for more qualified workers, STEM careers provide exciting opportunities for breaking the norm and offering upward mobility and economic security to women and minorities; groups disproportionately affected by poverty. The following guide provides an insider’s look at STEM industries, explores why women and minorities have traditionally been underrepresented in these fields and what is being done to change the status quo.
The field of computer science has led the way in creating secure, well-paying jobs over the last decade—and that trend is expected to continue. Professionals in the field can pick from myriad established specialties, all with solid employment outlooks and good earning potential, or look to one of the emerging careers in the field. The keys to building a great future in computer science are knowing the available options and laying out a sound plan to get started.
“STEM” is an abbreviation for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Predominantly, these are the fields in which new industries, businesses, and human possibilities are conceived. STEM workers solve everyday problems, research and analyze data about the world around us, and use their knowledge to design everything from computer programs to prosthetic limbs. STEM workers occupy jobs ranging from food science technician to cartographer, engineering manager to database administrator.
In December 2015, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad ordered state officials to begin developing a strategy that would better prepare the state in the event of a cyberattack. Career opportunities for cybersecurity professionals in Iowa range from state government agencies like the Iowa Information Security Office and the Iowa Department of Homeland Security, to private cybersecurity businesses like Armolon Corporation, to large Iowa corporations like A.Y. McDonald Manufacturing Company in Dubuque and McLeodUSA in Cedar Rapids.
Florida Polytechnic University launched STEMStudy.com, as a handy, easy-to-use resource for high school students and their parents who are considering a STEM-focused college degree program. The site contains information and tools about the college preparation and application process, including a financial aid calculator, STEM careers glossary and an application checklist with tips to consider through all four years of high school.
The LearnHowToBecome.org team help students understand what it takes to land their perfect career, from picking the right school all the way to climbing the company ladder. They offer a comprehensive resource that can guide individuals through each of the steps they need to take to begin, further, or change their career path.
This resource highlights over 60 exciting careers in this industry, including corresponding links to the Future Ready Iowa Career Coach site for readers to learn more about local education and employment opportunities. Career interest and personality types were also incorporated throughout, to better match students and job seekers with a more personalized experience on their career exploration journey.