A non-for-profit grassroots organization, “Liberians Encouraging Students in Science and Technology” or LESSAT, has disclosed plan to launch a new educational program in the country.
The organizer of the program,Ms Doris Myers, noted that the exercise is a pre-college STEM innovation to inspire young people, especially females to develop interest in Science and Technology, Engineering and Mathematics thru free lectures presented on slid shows titled, “The Science and Technology Exhibition.”
Ms Myers disclosed that over the years she has observed challenges young people face in aspiring for a better STEM career in Liberia due to lack of knowledge in the sciences. She said the need to resolve some of those challenges to enable the youths to experience a better environment for STEM cannot be over emphasized.
“[As a result of the Liberian Civil War, the nation has suffered a serious setback relative to its manpower. This retrogression or weakened manpower has also greatly affected the STEM, which is vital to Liberia’s development. This has derived as a result of lack of interest in science and technology among Liberians, and the discouragement of Liberians with natural talents, who are able to invent, manufacture, or design their own ideas without going to school to learn it,” she noted.
According to her, majority of the country’s technical department heads are occupied by non-Liberians, while Liberians are assigned minor work thus, the country in most instances depends on foreign nationals to perform scientific and technological tasks, which are very costly and contribute to unemployment.
She said studies in science, technology, engineering and mathematics have made major impacts globally, “because it is the foundation of better development, improved standard of living, quality infrastructure and a major element of a strong, vibrant and productive society.”
Ms. Myers continued that research has proven that if there were no such fields and their applications, the world would have been a very miserable and unsafe place to live. She said the quest to find answers and solutions to the numerous questions man has for the protection of his existence began the process of STEM, adding that it is of great necessity to have the younger generation focus on STEM.
Ms Myers said LESSAT strives to promote STEM education in creating a world where young people are encouraged to celebrate fun and excitementsin science and technology, which will inspire them to choose subjects based career paths to become tomorrow’s much needed Science and Technology leaders.
She has meanwhile called on Liberians through the Ministry of Education to promote STEM education to help bolster the economy. “Encouraging STEM growth in a developing country like Liberia is important, because many new jobs will be created in general engineering, computer and IT industries nationwide. Educating people in these fields is going to bring tremendous growth and help get people out of poverty.
By Ben P. Wesee – Edited by Jonathan Browne