Business Study Words

What’s “STEM” and how do you use it?

Need some help using that complicated English vocabulary? Here's a short article to help explain the word "STEM" with real life examples.

STEM – (acronym) science, technology, engineering, and mathematics; often discussed as a group of academic or career fields

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Previously, we had talked about caveat, which has a very long history in English. Today, we will look at “STEM” which has a much shorter history to it.

Although these four fields have been discussed together since at least the mid 1980s, the first usage of the acryonm being used came around 2005, when Rep. Vernon Ehlers, a Republican from Michigan, and Rep. Mark Udall, a Democrat from Colorado, had “set up the Science Technology Engineering and Math, or STEM, caucus” in Congress. Since that time, it is often discussed in both business, education, and politics as an important concept for preparing the future workforce as well as necessary for the needs of today.

Here’s an example of it’s usage from the STEM Education Coalition, a non-partisan in the US that supports greater funding and support for science, technology, engineering, and math research and education:

The STEM Education Coalition works aggressively to raise awareness in Congress, the Administration, and other organizations about the critical role that STEM education plays in enabling the U.S. to remain the economic and technological leader of the global marketplace of the 21st century. Members of the STEM Coalition believe that our nation must improve the way our students learn science, mathematics, technology and engineering and that the business, education, and STEM communities must work together to achieve this goal.

As you can see, STEM is often written in all capital letters and as a noun.

Here’s another example from SFGate, a publication based in the San Fransisco Bay area talking about Harvey Mudd College, an immensely successful university:

HMC [Harvey Mudd College] describes its core curriculum as “an academic boot camp in the STEM disciplines — math, physics, chemistry, biology, computer science, and engineering — as well as classes in writing and critical inquiry” that it says “gives students a broad scientific foundation and the skills to think and to solve problems across disciplines.”

You might see caveat used in the following:

STEAM — (Acronym) Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and math. This is a new idea that is becoming quite popular in schools and business across the United States; combining both style and technology to create new products [a la Steve Jobs]

 

VOCABULARY

Rep. – (n.) Short for “Representative,” most often used for “House Representative,” member of the lower house in the United States congress.
a la – (preposition) similar to, in the manner of

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