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Message from the SEE Project Director

Careers Making the STEM Connection

Each year, April 15th is associated with paying taxes to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It is the day when individuals must settle their tax bill. Many complain about the funds that are paid after completing the IRS Form 1040. But consider the alternative to paying fewer taxes. That is, being unemployed or under-employed! The education and career choices made will impact your earning potential.

In addition to being an informal education program, The Science and Everyday Experiences (SEE) Project, is also a long-range workforce initiative designed to encourage African American students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) courses. One major objective of SEE is to emphasize how science is all around us as a part of our everyday experiences. Moreover, SEE concentrates on showing African American youth and their families that science does not have to be difficult — it can be a lot of fun and there are many career choices for our youth to consider.

Despite headlines touting the exodus of information technology (IT) jobs through outsourcing to countries like India, China, and other foreign places, where labor is cheap, there are still tremendous job opportunities, both domestic and abroad for workers with the right combination of skills.

Studies report a deficit in the number of workers needed to fill jobs in science, engineering, mathematics, and technology well into our foreseeable future. We can help fill this gap, but the preparation must start now. In order to ensure the future success of our next generation, there needs to be change on two sides. Students must abandon old fears and negative attitudes about math, while parents and teachers partner to facilitate this change in attitude by finding new and creative ways to teach challenging material. The new culture of thinking among everyone (students, parents and teachers) reinforces the new mind-set — mastering STEM courses — and widens the horizon to new career possibilities.

In our highly technological society, excellence in science and mathematics are clear requirements for success. More subtle, but of equal importance is the ability to communicate effectively. Termed the “soft skills,” employers are paying more attention to candidates’ oral and written communications skills. Students who are skilled in science and technology and possess good communications skills will be thoroughly equipped to seek the extensive career opportunities in STEM areas. Use the resources on this site to help a young person begin on a path to exploring mathematics, science, technology and engineering. Guide them and watch them blossom and grow into successful students, well on their way to advancing humanity.

Archive of Director's Messages:
Keeping the Connection: Building on the Past, Focusing on the Future [Archived Nov 2004]
Partners and Collaborators [Archived Jan 2005]
Project SEE — Based on Everyday Items But Not an Everyday Occurrence [Archived Jun 2005]
What I Did on My Summer Vacation! [Archived Oct 2005]
Katrina and Its Aftermath [Archived Mar 2006]
Lessons to Be Learned [Archived Sep 2006]
Parent with a Purpose [Archived Aug 2007]

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