DuPont Joins Change the Equation to Solve America’s
DuPont has joined Change the Equation (CTEq), a CEO-led initiative to cultivate widespread literacy in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). CTEq will not only achieve U.S. President Obama’s Educate to Innovate campaign mission to increase private and philanthropic involvement in STEM education, but also will meet a critical need for a work force and citizenry fluent in science and math.
Change the Equation is bringing together top companies like DuPont across multiple sectors, all of which are dedicated to preparing students for STEM-related careers.
“Investing in and collaborating on STEM education has been a priority for DuPont for many years,” said Randolph Guschl, director – DuPont Center for Collaborative Research & Education. “STEM literacy is a business imperative for DuPont and our nation’s economic excellence, success and citizenship.”
Through innovative and effective company-led programs, DuPont and CTEq aim to fill the opportunity gap with capable and enthusiastic STEM-literate young people. It is the first and only STEM education group that brings so many corporate leaders together in collaboration with the White House, State Houses nationwide and the foundation community. DuPont is joined by other founding members, including Time Warner Cable, Sally Ride Science, Kodak, Intel and Xerox.
According to a report by the Center on Education and the Workforce, there will be 8 million jobs available in STEM-related fields by 2018. DuPont has long held that its industrial base will require thousands of STEM jobs in the next 10 years. The report also finds the next generation of employees in America will be unprepared to take advantage of these positions.
America’s problem with math — which is the entry point into science, technology and engineering — is not solely rooted in academic skill. It may be indicative of a deeper cultural norm. According to a recent survey commissioned by CTEq, nearly three in 10 adults believe they are not good at math. The problem is especially acute in younger Americans. More than half of Americans aged 18 to 36 admit they often find themselves saying they can’t do math. Americans’ attitudes toward math were so negative that 30% would prefer cleaning the bathroom to doing a math problem.
“‘I can’t do math’ has become an iconic excuse in our society,” said Linda Rosen, chief executive officer – CTEq. “Many Americans have expressed it, but I don’t believe it’s an accurate reflection of who we are, or, more importantly, what we can do.”
“If we don’t encourage our children and students to get excited about math as well as science, technology and engineering, we are denying them the chance to reach their potential and be prepared for a future filled with opportunity,” Linda said.
CTEq will establish a set of criteria that guides the organization and its member companies in defining program success.
“It has been said that conscience is a person’s compass,” Linda said. “CTEq can and will fire the nation’s conscience on STEM education. We will monitor our own progress and the progress of others, identifying what is working and what isn’t. CTEq will apply the lessons we learn so that the nation continues to move toward a future where every American is literate in science, technology, engineering and mathematics."