One Parent's Thoughts on Neustar's STEM Leadership Award
Neustar was honored last week at the STEM Education Leadership Awards presented by Nasdaq and EverFi. The award recognizes Neustar’s “significant efforts to improve STEM education and career readiness for students across North America.”
Building Robots and Job Skills
As a Neustar employee, I’m happy about this. As a parent, I’m even happier. My 17-year-old daughter has participated in several STEM programs (science, technology, engineering and math), most recently building robots at George Mason University in nearby Fairfax, VA. Yes, she complains about math homework, but she’s acing it and science too. She’s ready for college next year and could, if she chooses, go on to be a scientist, engineer, or astronaut. (We’ve seen the movie The Martian and she knows what to do in a pinch.)
As Neustar President and CEO Lisa Hook said, “Students need to learn how to use technology responsibly and prepare to fill valuable jobs in our nation’s economy.”
Indeed, experts from Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce estimate that within 20 years nearly two thirds of workers will hold jobs that have not yet been created. Yet the National Math & Science Initiative reports that only 44% of U.S. high school graduates were ready for college-level math as of 2013, and only 36% ready for college science.
Partnering to Reach Over 150,000 Students
Neustar and fellow STEM honorees were selected based in part on the scale and educational impact of their STEM programs. Partnering with EverFi, Neustar has brought an innovative program, My Digital Life, to over 150,000 students in California, Kentucky, and Virginia, three states where we have a significant business and community presence. EverFi developed the program to take advantage of the latest in simulation and gaming technologies. We’re helping to make it happen at no cost to schools or taxpayers.
The STEM Leadership Award isn’t just a trophy. It’s about helping the U.S. stay ahead in the global economy. It’s about teaching young people to use technology safely and ethically. It’s about kids with the brains and energy to do great things with their lives. And, in the meantime, to show their dads how to use their phones.