Bridging The STEM Talent Gap Is Not About Degrees, But Skill Sets


Editor’s note: Tony Portela is co-founder and managing director of onTop Technology Corporation, an IT services company .

In 2013, there were 2.5 times as many entry-level, STEM-related job postings as there were STEM graduates, according to a study by  Burning Glass Technologies. The new U.S. News/Raytheon STEM index shows that student aptitude for and interest in STEM increased just 4 percent between 2000 and 2010, while data from the National Science Foundation show the number of STEM jobs grew 20 percent.

But what ails technology employers in the U.S. is much broader than a lack of degrees in computer science and engineering. A shortage of people with degrees in STEM fields is a problem, no doubt. But an even bigger problem is a shortage of people with the right skill sets.

That is a problem my colleagues articulated clearly in a technology workforce study commissioned by the Arizona…

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