STEM – The Mother of Innovation

There is likely no innovation throughout the course of history that does not owe itself to science, technology, engineering, or math – or, more likely, a combination thereof.

What, for example, do the wheel, San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, and the International Space Station have in common? Each was an engineering marvel of its day – and will remain as such with the passage of time.

Of course engineering would not be possible without math, which in itself has contributed significantly to the progress of humankind for much longer than most people realize. Notches discovered on prehistoric animal bones show humans began putting mathematics to use around 30,000 BC. Some 5,000 years later, early geometric designs were utilized. Over time algebraic equations, written numbers, and mechanics were developed. Among the numerous inventions they made possible are the printing press, calculator, GPS satellite system, and space flight.

When considering both past and current discoveries, one cannot discount the important roles also played by science and technology. Each had a part in such life-changing innovations as electricity, penicillin, vaccinations, the personal computer, and countless others.

The late astronomer and NASA consultant Carl Sagan once said, “Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.” Even today, his words hold true. We will never know all there is to discover. Yet by putting science, technology, engineering, and math to work in pushing the boundaries of what is possible, we can grow ever closer to the next “something incredible” waiting around the corner.