The Hidden STEM Economy: The Range of STEM Knowledge Across Occupations

Presenters: Susan Singer, Jonathan Rothwell
In this plenary, recent research that redefines STEM occupations will be described. The presenter and author of the The Hidden STEM Economy report will discuss how one can determine whether a job is considered STEM-intensive by understanding its knowledge requirements. The presenter will also discuss how many STEM jobs that require only a sub-bachelor's level education still share some of the positive characteristics associated with professional STEM jobs, such as high pay and importance to innovation or health.

Susan Singer, Director, Division of Undergraduate Education, National Science Foundation
Susan Singer is director of the Division of Undergraduate Education at the National Science Foundation (NSF), and Laurence McKinley Gould Professor in the Biology and Cognitive Science Departments at Carleton College. She is a national leader in undergraduate education policy and pursues a career that integrates science and education. In addition to a PhD in Biology from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, she completed a teacher certification program in New York State. A developmental biologist who studies flowering in legumes and also does research on learning in genomics, Singer is an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) fellow and received both the American Society of Plant Biology teaching award and Botanical Society of America Charles Bessey teaching award. She directed Carleton’s Perlman Center for Learning and Teaching, was an NSF program officer in Biology, and is a co-author of the Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology report and an introductory biology text. She has served on numerous boards, including the NSF Directorate for Education and Human Resources Advisory Committee, Biological Sciences Curriculum Study Board, the American Society of Plant Biology Education Foundation, and the Botanical Society Board of Directors. She is a member-at-large for the AAAS Education Section, participates in the Minnesota Next Generation Science Standards team, and was a member of the National Academies’ Board on Science Education. She has participated in six National Academies studies, including chairing the committees that authored America’s Lab Report, Promising Practices in STEM Undergraduate Education and Discipline-based Education Research: Understanding and Improving Learning in Undergraduate Science and Engineering.

Jonathan Rothwell, Senior Research Associate and Associate Fellow, Metropolitan Policy Program, Brookings Institution
For the past five years, Jonathan Rothwell has developed innovative approaches to the measurement and analysis of economic growth, social mobility, and human capital, especially at the regional scale. He has authored both academic articles in peer-reviewed social science journals and popular reports from Brookings. His Brookings publications include work on green jobs, exports, school quality, patents, and skill mismatch. Rothwell’s work garners both media attention and interest from a diverse group of policy makers and civic leaders. On STEM specifically, his research has expanded how people think about skilled blue collar workers and the role of community colleges in supporting regional and national economic growth. Rothwell holds a BS from Pennsylvania State University, a master’s degree in Economics from The New School, and a PhD in Public Affairs from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School.