Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics

The Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics STEM career cluster includes as many as 184 occupations. What do they have in common? Workers in these careers use scientific, technological, engineering, and or mathematical processes to do research and solve problems. The problems they approach are as different as growing enough food, reducing our reliance on fossil fuels, developing medicines to treat mental illness, and creating computers that enhance our lives. Their career focus can be as small as a nanoparticle or as large as the universe.

Work settings vary with the topic of STEM research. While some jobs take place in front of a computer or in a laboratory, others require people to work in outdoor environments. Schedules also depend on the focus of STEM workers’ research. Some individuals have very regular hours, but others’ schedules depend upon availability of the subject they analyze. Employers who are likely to hire STEM qualified workers include engineering companies; the federal, state, and local government; scientific research companies; colleges and universities; and medical device manufacturers.

More than any of the other clusters, many STEM careers require at least an Associates degree or higher. Most occupations require a bachelor’s degree, and some workers need master’s or doctoral level credentials for a significant number of jobs. Typical educational backgrounds for entry into five occupations that are projected to have the most new jobs in New Mexico include:

  • Market Research Analysts and Marketing Specialists - Bachelor’s degree
  • Applications Software Developers - Bachelor’s degree
  • Computer User Support Specialists – Some college, no degree
  • Health Specialties Teachers - Doctoral or professional degree
  • Civil Engineers – Bachelor’s degree