In a previous blog post, we discussed what STEM education is and why ME Education has adopted this beneficial system of education.
In this blog, we will cover why it is especially empowering for our female students, and how this new approach caters to their unique needs.
First, a brief introduction about what STEM education is.
The STEM curriculum is centred around four specific disciplines:
Why is STEM Important?
Today’s job market is largely focused on technology and the sciences. Some of the brightest prospects for graduating students are in STEM related fields. We are confident that when our students leave us, they are armed with far more than just a certificate. We want to know that as educators, we have equipped them as best we can to flourish and find success in whatever path they choose.
That’s why we have adopted the STEM framework of education. We are especially proud to be offering it to our female students because women are highly underrepresented in STEM related fields.
Women in STEM
In Asia, the number of women who make up the STEM research workforce is way below the (already low) global average. Unfortunately, in Hong Kong, according to the marked gender skew in STEM-related subject choices, and university degree enrolments, a significant number of female students are not considering careers in STEM related fields.
In hard science fields like mathematics, engineering, and software development, only 16% of the countries in Asia have an equal or above-equal share of women working in STEM-related fields. The global STEM research workforce has a meagre female representation of only 30%.
Why Are Women Underrepresented in STEM?
A recent study conducted by UNESCO’s Asia and Pacific regional bureau, gave insight into the reason behind the low number of women represented in STEM-based careers in Asia. The research indicates that there are common gender differences in education and learning achievements in the early years of children’s education.
In addition to the educational differences between male and female students, another study shone light on the fact that there are a number of complex factors that can prevent female students from pursuing STEM related qualifications post-graduation from school. These factors were wide ranging and included social issues, environments, media stereotypes, social pressures, and a severe lack of female STEM role models.
This lack of female STEM role models is something we are fighting hard to correct. Our female students have the drive and ambition to build careers in science and technology. They are motivated to forge their own identity and certainly have the will power to make it happen. With the education behind them that bolsters their ambitions, we aim to contribute to the rise in a female represented STEM workforce in Hong Kong, thereby inspiring and empowering other women to do the same.
A Parent’s Role
Apart from our students, the other most important stakeholder in our drive to empower female students, is of course, their parents. Parents buy-in to our educational approach is vital for the success of their daughters. With the combined power of parents, teachers and of course, our female students, the sky's the limit when it comes to building confidence in our young women and shaping their future in STEM related fields.
We encourage parents of our female students to discuss the importance of STEM subjects with their daughters, and how they are relevant to school, work and everyday life. We believe it is also vital that parents and teachers work together to combat unbalanced media representation and unconscious biases with young students. We can do this together by exposing narrow and limiting stereotypes, and encouraging conversations around the potential success of women in STEM professions.
Parents and students should be educated on new and exciting career options in STEM related fields as this will further inspire our students to identify their passions and excel in their chosen field.
The ME Education Approach
Although the female STEM representation is low at the current moment, the changes in educational curriculums is a very positive step in the right direction.
Our goal at ME Education is to help students of ALL genders, ages, and ability levels, reach their full academic potential and ultimately to enter their ideal school or university. By adopting STEM curriculums for both male and female students, we can shrink the gender gap in learning achievements around math and science, and encourage balance within the STEM sectors. One of our course highlights is the STEM Semester Revision Courses.
In addition to all our STEM courses, we also offer various intensive programs that are tailored for students across IGCSE/GCE/IB curricula. In general, these programs are designed to help students build a solid foundation throughout their long holidays and prepare them for the upcoming challenges in their new school year.
We also offer an elite program for students with the potential to write their IGCSE/GCE exams in advance and prepare them towards the fast-track learning path.
To find out more about what we offer, please visit www.meeducationhk.com or email us at email@example.com.