As a global health technology company that recruits world-class scientists and engineers, we know women are a critical factor in solving the world’s biggest problems with smart, imaginative thinking.
But in the United States, women make up just 24% of the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) workforce, way below most other sectors. There are a lot of reasons for that: One of them is high school girls value creative thinking and want a career that has a positive impact on the world – but don’t always know how science and engineering can give them both, due to a lack of exposure.
We, together, can change that.
We know that hands-on, creative experiences encourage girls to engage in STEM, which is why we continue to invest in our high school internship program, which was founded in 2012. The internship demystifies what it means to work in STEM by giving students the opportunity to contribute to our life-changing technologies alongside engineers and scientists who look like them.
Because we choose students from diverse schools near the cities where we work, more than two-thirds of these students from across the U.S. are women and more than half are from other underrepresented groups. About half of them end up in our college internship program, and we’ve recently hired our first high school internship alumni on as full-time employees. Five of the seven are women.
We’re not perfect, but we’re actively working on it – and we’re sharing the blueprint of what’s worked well for us so far for any company interested in starting a high school internship program of their own. It’s going to take a village of science-based companies, committed to exposing young women to STEM early on, to change the statistics.
Join us in this movement.
Want more inspiration? Meet our STEM Sisters. A select group of incredible women who are making a difference through STEM fields at Abbott, every single day.
Are you a parent or teacher? Check out our Resources page on STEM activities you can do with your children and students.