Charge to the Workshop

Executive Summary

Part I: The STEM Workforce: Establishing the Need for Change

Under-Representation as a Social Justice Issue

Current Lack of Diversity and Opportunity

Part II: The STEM Pathways Workshop: Describing the Change

Broad Issues Related to the STEM Workforce

From Successful Programs to Large-Scale Change

The Contributions of

An Action Plan

Part III: Conclusion: Toward a New Vision for the Enterprise of Science


Appendix: Workshop Attendees


Part II: The STEM Pathways Workshop: Describing the Change

With this strategic concern in mind, the federal government and industry have exhibited keen interest in developing the scientific and engineering workforce of the 21st century. The strategic focus is to identify new and existing programs that will create easily navigable pathways to STEM careers by attracting more U.S. students and broadening participation in STEM fields. The ultimate goal is to prepare a STEM workforce capable of meeting the challenges of the 21st century. To explore these issues a workshop was convened in the fall of 2003 to provide an opportunity for experts from the relevant communities to explore the extent to which the existing knowledge base on STEM workforce issues can inform the creation and expansion of such pathways. The workshop was organized around the five goals shown below.

1 Review and discuss existing research findings and programs related to workforce issues
2 Discuss actions needed to broaden participation in the STEM workforce
3 Identify strategic research areas and education funding priorities that will result in a rich and diverse STEM workforce strengthened by  broader participation of U.S. citizens
4 Identify evaluation methodologies, criteria and metrics to measure the success of future programs
5 Identify and propose strategies and funding mechanisms that will propel more underrepresented group members in STEM leadership positions.

The overall goal of the workshop was to determine the state of extant knowledge, to identify knowledge gaps, and to propose key components of a program agenda to address the problem. It began with a series of plenary and panel presentations followed by intense discussions in breakout sessions and with the group as a whole. The critical themes emerging from the discussions and breakout sessions are summarized below.