SOURCE: The Boston Consulting Group

The Boston Consulting Group

December 02, 2014 12:10 ET

Huge Payoff for Investments in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math Education

Targeted Investments in Washington State Could Double the Number of STEM Graduates, Lift Nearly 100,000 People Out of Poverty, and Yield a Sevenfold Return on Investment for Government, BCG Finds

SEATTLE, WA--(Marketwired - Dec 2, 2014) - Only 9 out of 100 children born in Washington will ultimately become employees in a field related to science, technology, engineering, and math (collectively known as STEM) in the state -- far fewer than the number of people needed to fill Washington jobs requiring STEM-related skills. The situation is worse for low-income students, who are two to three times less well prepared for the STEM workforce than their more affluent peers, according to a new report by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG).

The report, titled Opportunity for All: Investing in Washington State's STEM Education Pipeline, is being released today at the annual Washington STEM Summit.

"A serious problem is lurking behind Washington's tech-driven economic boom: a leak in the pipeline for employees to fill the state's most valuable jobs in science, technology, engineering, and math," said John Wenstrup, a BCG partner and a lead author of the report. "Trying to fill great jobs with a leaky human-capital pipeline is like living in a boomtown without enough roads, electricity, or water."

The report highlights five choke points in the educational system "from cradle to career," which are impeding Washington's ability to produce enough STEM graduates to address its job skills shortage. To foster economic growth, improve social equity, and offer opportunity to all, the state will need to invest in the STEM employee pipeline, according to the authors of the report.

Creating more STEM jobs would not only boost Washington's economy but also reduce poverty and unemployment, help all Washington families prosper, and create a better-prepared workforce. If Washington can match the practices of high-performing states, such as California and Massachusetts, it could more than double the output of the overall STEM employee pipeline, BCG estimates. Such an increase could generate additional career options as well as expand the participation of women and minorities, who are underrepresented in the STEM workforce.

"Washington must take immediate steps to prepare local students to seize the great jobs in its backyard," said Wenstrup. "The rewards are simply too great."

A copy of the report can be downloaded at www.bcgperspectives.com.

To arrange an interview with one of the authors, please contact Eric Gregoire at +1 617 850 3783 or gregoire.eric@bcg.com.

About The Boston Consulting Group
The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is a global management consulting firm and the world's leading advisor on business strategy. We partner with clients from the private, public, and not-for-profit sectors in all regions to identify their highest-value opportunities, address their most critical challenges, and transform their enterprises. Our customized approach combines deep insight into the dynamics of companies and markets with close collaboration at all levels of the client organization. This ensures that our clients achieve sustainable competitive advantage, build more capable organizations, and secure lasting results. Founded in 1963, BCG is a private company with 81 offices in 45 countries. For more information, please visit bcg.com.

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Contact Information

  • The Boston Consulting Group
    Eric Gregoire
    Global Media Relations Manager

    Tel +1 617 850 3783
    Fax +1 617 850 3701
    gregoire.eric@bcg.com