San Francisco Students Participate in STEM Career Awareness Day

A consortium of businesses, schools and governments in the San Francisco Bay Area held the second annual STEM Career Awareness Day March 15. The goal was to encourage high school students to pursue college degrees and, eventually, careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

More than 100 students from three San Francisco Unified School District high schools participated in the event that started out the day at the Rutter Center on the Mission Bay campus of the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF). They then visited a number of businesses in the San Francisco area where they received tours and had discussions with scientists and engineers.

Among the companies that participated were:

  • Bayer;
  • FibroGen;
  • OtherLab;
  • Splunk;
  • Discovery Digital;
  • The EcoCenter at Heron's Head Park;
  • PG&E;
  • TechShop;
  • Adobe;
  • Illumina; and
  • PUC Southeast Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Bayer, which is the Bay Area's third largest biotech employer, was the primary sponsor of the event that was organized as part of UCSF's Science and Health Education Partnership with the school district.

The program is in response to a 2014 report from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics that found, while STEM unemployment is low — 3.1 percent compared to an overall national unemployment rate of 7.4 percent — more than 9 million more STEM jobs will be created by 2022.

"We know that the best investment we can make for our city's future is an investment in our young people," said San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, "and that's why we are laser-focused on making sure our public schools are the best in the nation. This helps to inspire our students to pursue the science and technology careers of the 21st century economy."

About the Author

Michael Hart is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer and the former executive editor of THE Journal.