President Gray discussed her own STEM education and path in the career. Originally a North Carolina school teacher, she gained her training in hands-on experiments at home. Gray would perform science experiments in her backyard. Back in the day, girls were not expected to perform well at math and science. Despite this limitation, Gray managed to succeed. Inspired by the first woman in space, Sally Ride, Gray stepped up her educational goals. She pursued a STEM education in order to become a leader in the field. This approach worked and she went on to get a degree from North Carolina State University in math and science.
Since that day, Gray continued in the career field to become the president of BAE Systems Intelligence & Security. The company provides geospatial technology, cyber security and internet technology solutions for all of its clients. With her experience, Gray wants to reach out and help other students develop the same skills. STEM is an integral part of the modern economy. To reach out to students, educators have to find ways to make math and science interesting. If this approach works, the economy will have a range of new workers who are skilled in STEM education.
The EventHeld in Arlington, Virginia, this event was coordinated by the United States Army. It was located at Fort Myer. The Army hosted the event due to their own concerns about education in science, engineering, technology and mathematics. Currently, the United States has 39 million youth who are between the ages of 17 and 24. Out of these individuals, 75 percent cannot join any branch of the United States military. With stringent physical, educational and behavioral standards, the individuals are not qualified enough to serve in the military. Unfortunately, the Army forecasts a growth of 2.8 million jobs in science engineering, technology and mathematics. This growth is expected to be reached by 2020 due to new job requirements and the retirement of current military personnel.
BAE Systems and EducationBAE Systems Intelligence & Security has placed a key focus on developing students in science, engineering, technology and mathematics. One of their efforts is through the non-profit, For Inspiration and Recognition of Science (FIRST). This group works to encourage the youth of America to enter STEM fields. FIRST designed a range of programs based on pairing up students with mentors. Through the program, students will develop new capabilities in science, technology and engineering. In partnership with FIRST, BAE Systems provided the funding and mentoring of 127 student teams in the last year. Other efforts by BAE Systems include programs that encourage minorities to enter STEM education. They work with the Society of Professional Hispanic Engineers and the National Society of Black Engineers. In addition, BAE Systems is a supporter of Women in Engineering.
In order to advance economically, the United States must train workers in high-demand STEM careers. Organizations like BAE Systems and the United States Army are leading the way in outreach programs. Through the new skills, the workforce will be better able to protect the nation's physical security and online security.