STEM Advancement through Diversity and Inclusion

by Sherrie Samuels, Communications Manager

Statistical research has proven that diversity and inclusion in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) careers are a long-standing challenge both in the professional and educational realms. Despite mandatory diversity training at most major organizations, evidence shows that the integration and retention of diverse student and workforce populations have decreased in recent years. Case in point, the number of computer science degrees earned by women decreased from 37% in 1985 to 18% in 2012. Further noted, 41% of women exit technology firms within 10 years as compared to only 17% of men.

Policies that foster accountability have been found to be more effective at disrupting systemic bias. Recent metrics-based approaches referred to as bias interrupters capture subjective practice results at all hierarchical levels. Analyzing demographic trends in recruiting, salaries, employee retention, and promotions provide the essential data needed to develop training and policies that will change the diversity landscape of an entity or industry.  

A rounded approach is warranted to address the complex diversity indices of today‚Äôs global market. Diversity and inclusive hiring practices without embedded systems for retention have proven to be counterintuitive.  Utilizing statistical-based tracking systems is an objective means of consistent measurement of bias indicators, such as work performance evaluations and related tenure, which will assist in creating effective bias interrupters to circumvent the loss of the investment in talent and acquired knowledge.  

The overarching rationale for effective diversity and inclusion programs is to progress and promote globally competitive STEM platforms and research.  Numerous studies have consistently revealed that heterogeneously demographic groups outperform homogenous clusters, thus creating powerful collaborations that will advance STEM in the 21st century and beyond.

Table SALT Group is honored to announce the selection of LaRachelle Smith, Managing Director, as a panelist for the 2021 American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) SciTech Forum 360 session Accelerating Innovation Through Diversity. Contact us to learn more about our research-based diversity curriculum and training for leaders and early career professionals.

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