Why STEM Education Matters for the Future of US Tech

April 15, 2016 - 3 minutes read

STEM education for future mobile app developers

Computer science and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education are something we feel very strongly about at Dogtown Media. Many members of our mobile app development team are involved in tech education advocacy — our CEO Marc Fischer even teaches app development at Santa Monica college, and has spoken to student groups on the issue as well as judged youth coding competitions.

Long story short: getting young people involved in tech is a huge part of our mission as mobile app developers.

The growth of tech in the US has one major weak point: the lack of qualified candidates to fill positions at mobile app development companies. As of last year, the average salary for coders was a staggering $99,530. Meanwhile, projections estimate that there will be over 1 million unfilled positions by 2024.

Multiply that salary by a million, and you can start to understand why the government should be worried about the current lack of STEM and tech development-specific education available to students on the pre-college level. We need more coders and mobile app developers here in Los Angeles, and we need them yesterday — so where’s the educational infrastructure to make it happen?

The answer is complicated, but the short answer is this: politicians are listening and they want tech to grow just as much as we do. Especially on the local level, representatives around the country are taking an interest in mobile development like never before. And they have good reason to; study after study has shown the immensely positive affects the tech industry can have on local economies, drawing in talented young people and pumping new cashflow into existing businesses.

We’re headed to AppCon 2016 this coming week, and we’re looking forward to what may be our best opportunity yet to have a positive impact on tech education policy in the US. We’ll be meeting other prominent tech companies from around the country to consult with elected officials about mobile app development issues like encryption, trade, and most importantly education.

It’s our hope that making the needs of mobile app development companies clear to Capitol Hill will nudge us one step closer to a future where tech education is a stronger part of middle and high-school public education. It’s not a question of if they’ll listen — it’s just a question of how fast we can work together to make it happen.

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