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A Better Future with STEM Education

As mentioned by Livescience (2014) STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) is an interdisciplinary and applied approach which integrates these four subjects into a cohesive learning paradigm based on real-world applications. It was originally called SMET (Science, Mathematics, Engineering and Technology). STEM education is currently the most talked about topic globally. It is described as an accented movement and gains its impressive momentum during the 21st century. However, most teachers and students in Indonesia are clueless about STEM.  

As an illustration of how increasingly significant STEM has become nowadays and why talking about it is worth our time, we should look into how people become by applying STEM. The list of wealthy people used to be filled with steel and oil magnate as well as retail dynasties but now the tech giants are slowly creeping their way up the list.

Do you know that most billionaires today come from STEM fields? Steve Ballmer (one of Microsoft co-founders) and Sergey Brin (one of Google co-founders) were both studying Pure Math in college. Elon Musk, the man behind visionary companies Tesla and SpaceX, were once a Ph.D student in Physics before dropping out to pursue his passion as an entrepreneur. Those cool video games with awesome graphics that you play everyday are also created by people in STEM field.

What about Indonesia? Do you know Nadiem Makarim? He was graduate from business education, yet he found success in STEM field. Nadiem Makarim, one of Go-jek founders, becomes one of the most successful young entrepreneurs in Indonesia. He built Go-jek to become one of the most successful delivery services in Indonesia.

How about Khoirul Anwar? He is currently one of the top scientists in Japan. He holds two significant patents in STEM field. His first patent is Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM)-based on 4G technology. This invention inspired Dragon Balls’ animator to reduce his games’ transmission power and resulted an increasing data speed. The second patent known as 4G LTE which gives significant movement in telecommunication technology globally that was previously thought impossible.

What is the similarity between these people? People said they were crazy when they started building their masterpiece, because it went against what was currently mainstream. However, they saw potential and opportunity where no one else could. Now, the result of their work becomes an inseparable part of our daily lives.

Moreover, promoting STEM in developing countries becomes very important, especially for many jobs related to medicine, computer, and IT industries. Educating people in these fields is going to bring tremendous growth to the nation’s economy and could be one solution in helping people out of poverty line. STEM education can also empower human resources with global competitiveness. UNESCO emphasis that “STEM is critical in enabling developing countries to build up a critical mass of scientists, researchers, and engineers to enable them to participate fully in the global economy.”
Overall, this might be an insight that STEM might be the key to rule the world.  

In the future, can you imagine robotic engineering? Creating a robot can be a promising career in the future as most people want their simple jobs are taken over by robots. Drone development and exploration in the future will also give some benefits for human lives. What about traveling to space? Traveling to space is also possible to do in the future and space pilot will be the best future career in this field. More interestingly, due to people’s expectation to live longer, instead of using transplant organ doctors will find a way to create organs using human cells, people will be organ designer. Then, another promising STEM career in the future is water harvester. It might answer the water problem around the world by creating innovative way to provide drinking water with low impact to environment.

So, are you interested in becoming part of the future? Being involved in STEM might be theanswer.

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