The U.S. system of graduate and postgraduate education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics has been the gold standard for the rest of the world for decades. However, the current STEM education system has failed to change with the times and does not meet the needs of 21st century students.
Dramatic changes are required, including a more student-focused approach that provides graduate students and postdoctoral trainees with a realistic understanding of career prospects, one that encourages them to explore options outside of academia.
Those are among the shared conclusions and recommendations of two recent reports from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. Two authors, one from each committee who wrote the 2018 reports—former University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman and current Johns Hopkins University President Ronald Daniels—summarized the studies at a recent U-M workshop on graduate and postgraduate STEM training for the 21st century.