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The Positive Impact of STEM Careers

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Choosing your career is an incredibly important step in anyone’s life. Unless you change your mind down the line, it may determine your path for many years to come. When making this choice, it’s important to consider not only your skillset and your ambitions but also the kind of career that aligns with your personality and impact you can have with the career. Whether you’ve studied a STEM degree or you’re considering a move towards STEM, there are many options open to you. In this article, we’ll explore the positive ways STEM jobs can impact other people’s lives, create change for the better and offer you a fulfilling and meaningful career.  

The positive impact of science jobs 

There are numerous careers in the science sector that you could explore with a range of fascinating areas you can specialise in. In a science career, you get to study mysteries and address a wide range of global challenges. Here are a few ways that you can make a positive difference with a career in science: 

  1. Medical research 

Scientists and medical researchers dedicate their working lives to understanding the health challenges that people face and work tirelessly to discover breakthroughs that save lives. This includes everything from developing vaccines to eradicating diseases. Not only could you improve someone’s life on a personal scale, you can also work towards the improvement of whole communities by fostering a healthier, more resilient society.  

  1. Environmental science 

Another fantastic example of the good a science career can bring is through the environmental and sustainability route. Environmental scientists aim to understand and mitigate the impact climate change is having. By conducting research on sustainable practices, scientists contribute to creating a more eco-friendly world, positively impacting the lives of generations to come. 

Want to learn more about working in environmental science? Lauren, a Bright Network member, shares her experience of being an environmental scientist, what she’s learned so far in the role and how you can follow in her footsteps. Read Lauren’s story

If you’re keen to explore employers offering roles like these, check out GSK,AstraZeneca and Pfizer.

The positive impact of technology jobs 

Technology is at the forefront of innovation, exploration and progress in our digitally driven world. By working in technology, you can support the transformation of industries to create positive change. Here are some of the ways you could do that: 

  1. Artificial intelligence 

Despite the negative stories around AI at the moment, there are some highly positive uses of AI being developed right now. One case is identifying illnesses through x-rays, MRIs and other scans. This helps speed up the process of identifying illnesses meaning more people can receive support in a shorter amount of time. Another case is using AI to learn, catalogue and teach endangered languages. By doing this, languages, a vital part of many cultures, can be saved from extinction.

  1. Medical technology 

In today's digitally driven world, technology jobs are at the forefront of innovation and progress. Consider software developers working on healthcare applications that enhance patient care and streamline medical processes. These technological advancements not only improve efficiency but also have a direct and positive impact on the well-being of individuals. 

If you’d be interested in a career in AI or medical technology, find out more through Apple,Google and Accenture.

The positive impact of engineering jobs 

Engineering is an expansive discipline with many different specialisms spanning many areas of infrastructure and technology. A career in engineering could offer you many opportunities to bring positivity to others including: 

  1. Environmental engineering

By specialising in environmental engineering, you can look for alternative, sustainable sources of energy or exploring how existing sources of energy can be used most effectively. The aim being to minimise the impact these fuel types have or making sure any waste is disposed of in a conscious, ethical way. Many of these themes expand into nuclear and energy engineering as well. 

Interested to know more about being an environmental engineer? Read about Bright Network member Alyssa’s experience of what a day in the life of an energy and sustainability graduate involves including tasks, highlights and tips for success. 

  1. Civil engineering

While it may not seem likely, civil engineers have a great impact on the day to day lives of most people. This is because they’re responsible for the design of structures and systems used daily, for example roads, railways and sewage systems. Without civil engineers designing and improving the infrastructure we all regularly use, our society would be significantly more disordered. 

Want to know more? Check out our civil engineer career profile to find out the career path, qualifications and salary expectations of the job. 

If you’re interested in a career in engineering, you can explore role with employers like BMW Group,bp and Dyson.

The positive impact of maths jobs 

Despite a certain dislike for maths that some of us may have harboured since school, jobs in maths are incredibly important and can have a profound, positive impact. Here are some maths careers you could consider to make a difference: 

  1. Statistician

It’s the job of a statistician to mathematically analyse a dataset and make concrete conclusions from that data. The impact a statistician can have spans across a wide range of sectors and includes working on climate change, global vaccinations and many other important and worthwhile topics.  

Keen to know more about what being a statistician has to offer? Bright Network member Rhian tells us why she joined the Statistician graduate scheme at Ofcom including her insights and tips for how you can succeed in your applications too. 

  1. Meteorology 

A meteorologist’s work extends far beyond presenting the weather on TV. In fact, most meteorologists won’t work on TV reports at all. Meteorology spans across understanding the short and long term trends in weather systems and the climate. This means meteorologists have a big impact, especially when it comes to extreme weather. They support the detection of extreme weather systems and warn those who may be impacted by it so they can adjust their plans or evacuate safely if needed.  

When deciding on the STEM career that suits your needs, ambitions and expectations, consider the impact your career could have. Remember, your work has the potential to shape lives, solve global challenges, and contribute to a brighter future for all.  

These are just some of the many careers in STEM that you could follow to make a positive, meaningful change to people’s lives. Use our Career Path Test to find other roles suited to your skillset that you could explore.