About USG STEM Initiative
The USG STEM Initiative is a central component of the Board of Regent's Strategic Plan. The STEM Initiative builds upon the successes of initiatives such as the Partnership for Reform in Science and Mathematics (PRISM), and Mathematics, Engineering, and Science Achievement (MESA) programs, Proposed as a Presidential Initiative, the program was launched in July 2007 in response to the dire need for graduates in STEM related professions, and by studies that describe the changing landscape of higher education on the world stage and the corresponding implications for America's economic growth and national security.
In 2006, the United States ranked 13th in the proportion of its population that earned a baccalaureate degree or higher. Although the total number of science and engineering degrees awarded today by U.S. colleges and universities has grown slowly, key areas such as engineering, mathematics and physical sciences have shown little to no increase, and computer science degree production has decreased. A recent study from the University of California Berkley reports that China and India produce close to a million engineers annually, while the U.S. and Europe combined produce only about 170,000.