Unhidden Talents: How KC Is Bridging the Talent Gap
Here’s the simple fact: STEM demand at the high school, associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate levels far outweigh the supply.
Over the past 10 years, STEM jobs (Science, Technology - highlighted above, Engineering and Math) have grown three times faster than non-STEM jobs, and pay wages close to double the U.S. average. Here in Kansas City, STEM jobs grew 4.7 percent from 2001 to 2012.
That’s why Kansas City is getting STEM-y (even STEAM-y, the "a" is for "art") over talent—at all levels. From initiatives at the grade school and graduate school level, Kansas City aims to keep our artists and engineers, our scientists and designers close to home.
CODER DOJO – Grade School
Kansas City Women in Technology brought the global Coder Dojo program to KC to help teach kids—as young as seven years old—how to code.
Burns and McDonnell's BATTLE OF THE BRAINS – Grade School
It's pretty straightforward and pretty genius: kids are challenged to design the next great exhibit for Science City to win grant money for their school.
KC STEM ALLIANCE – Middle to High School
Through programs like Project Lead the Way and FIRST Robotics, the alliance coordinates data collection and facilitates partnerships among schools and businesses.
KC FIRST – Grade School to High School
In partnership with the KC STEM Alliance, KC FIRST engages young people in mentor-based programs that build science, engineering and technology skills; inspire innovation; and foster well-rounded life skills including self-confidence, communication and leadership.
BLUE VALLEY CAPS AND NORTHLAND CAPS – High School
High school students work with real businesses across six professional strands: accelerator, bioscience, business, engineering, human services, medicine and healthcare
BIZFEST – High School
KC BizFest offers high school juniors and seniors from KC’s Latino community an opportunity to learn a variety of life skills and business techniques.
UMKC BLOCH SCHOOL – College
The UMKC Bloch School develops managerial talent to help accelerate businesses into scalable, sustainable companies.
KAUFFMAN LABS – Entrepreneurs
Kauffman Laboratories for Enterprise Creation draws on the Kauffman Foundation's programs that supported a wave of entrepreneurial activity and understanding, and promises a new set of major innovations designed to develop the next generation of entrepreneurs. It regularly hosts coding classses and is the original home of 1 Million Cups.
ARTIST INC – Career artists
A collaborative partnership of the Charlotte Street Foundation, the Arts Council of Metropolitan Kansas City and the UMKC Innovation Center, Artist INC connects Kansas City artists of all disciplines to the tools, resources and opportunities necessary to develop their entrepreneurial skills and strengthen their artistic practice.
KCSOURCELINK – Startups and Established Business Owners
Education never stops. That’s why our Resource Partners offer workshops and seminars on a wide variety of topics, from Quickbooks to Investor Pitches to Social Media and beyond. Check the calendar for opportunities relevant to your business.
Know about a program that's helping bridge the talent divide? Let us know. Flickr image by Nic McPhee.