Editor's Comments: When I started specializing in the skills gap area a few years ago I had a lot of people say things like "What skills gap?" or "That's going to be like Y2K - a nonevent." Unfortunately, the skills gap/skills shortage is not fictional and yet another industry is reporting serious shortage. The cause of the skills gap is complex and a lack of high-quality STEM education is a major contributor. If you want to really understand the background on the skills gap I highly recommend reading the U.S. Technology Skills Gap by Gary J. Beach.
America’s pharmaceutical industry, a $333 billion business employing 854,000 people, is predicting a huge shortage of skilled employees over the next eight years — a deficit blamed in part on a lack of high-quality STEM education in U.S. K-12 schools.
A series of reports released Monday by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), an industry trade group, highlight the need to buttress education in science, technology, engineering, and math to close a skills gap that the reports estimate will result in 60 percent of 3.4 million industry jobs — approximately 2 million — going unfilled by 2025.
One report cites results of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), an academic test given to teenagers around the world, that consistently show U.S. high schoolers lagging well behind students in many other developed countries in math and science.
American ninth-graders rank 36th in math literacy and 28th in science among all 65 countries and regions tested, the report said. Read the entire article.