Can STEM offer you a ‘dream career’?

After much furore in the press and a substantial amount of confusion, all A level results across the UK have now been released. Whether you’re a teacher or a student, you’ll be relieved the wait is over! Rather than dwell on how these results were decided upon (you’ve probably read about that enough already!), we think this is the perfect time to look ahead to the future and to think about ‘dream jobs’.

FutureLearn, the leading social learning platform, conducted a ‘dream career’ survey to coincide with the launch of Ace the Interview, a collection of courses designed to help people prepare for those ‘dream job’ interviews.

So, what did the survey reveal? We’re delighted – though not surprised – to learn that STEM jobs topped the ‘dream career’ poll, with the 5 most popular jobs being: zoologist (22%), architect (21%), engineer (20%), professional food tester (17%) and teacher (15%).

-The survey also showed:

  • Engineering was voted the top aspirational job by men (27%)
  • Zoology was voted the top aspirational job by women (27%)
  • Journalism was the top dream career for 18-24 year-olds (28%)
  • The majority of 25-44 year olds voted Professional Food Testing as their top dream career (25%) – well, we can certainly see the appeal!

As Susannah Belcher, Chief Data and Revenue Officer at FutureLearn, explains, “STEM careers have really grown in popularity over the past few years, as has demand for highly skilled talent to fill these roles. Prior to the pandemic, STEM jobs were expected to increase by 5.94% between 2019 and 2027 according to research. The importance of many STEM professionals throughout the pandemic means that this trend will likely continue.”

At a time of uncertainty, it’s great to see positive statistics about the opportunities offered by STEM, and with organisations offering an array of support and guidance, this really is the time to aim high. FutureLearn’s Ace the Interview course collection has been designed to help people do just that. Topics range from how to write an application, to how to make an effective presentation. There are courses on management and leadership, programming and artificial intelligence. As Susannah enthuses, “We hope our Ace the Interview collection of courses will help people prepare for these high-value roles and indeed any other dream career path they choose to pursue.”

And other highlights of the survey? Dog walker (11%), event planner (9%), video gamer (8%) and YouTuber (7%) also proved popular. So, if you’re an ambitious STEM innovator with a genius idea about enabling dog walkers to enhance their canine-caring skills at a virtual, interactive gaming event, it looks like there’s a keen audience out there waiting for your inspiration!

A level graduates 2020, whatever your dream career might be, congratulations on attaining your results and best of luck for the future!

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