An example of this already coming to light exists in the American agricultural industry. There, minimum wages for laborers are too high for farmers to afford. As an alternative, many farmers are beginning to seek out automated rovers and drones to aid them in their work in the fields. Rovers are already beginning to be used to herd cattle. They follow a pre-programmed path and contain sensors to make sure the cattle are near them. Drones are being used to survey farmland and also to dust crops with pesticides.
A Wide-Sweeping Trend
While this may seem like a small example in one isolated industry, it is part of a growing trend towards automation. Numerous Fortune 500 companies already have their factories largely employed by automated machine arms to assemble products, and those who don’t have such large automated arsenals of laborers are actively working to develop them. This will lead to a decrease in manual labor jobs, but will cause a rise in the demand for engineers. These highly-skilled college graduates will be needed to design, build, modify, and repair these huge arsenals of assembly machines.
As such, it is clear to see that education, especially in STEM fields, is crucial to future economic growth. Companies without fleets of educated engineers will soon fall behind in the market, as their less efficient way of doing things will lead them to be forced to charge more than competitors. As a result profits will suffer, and the risk of shutting down would remain high. Additionally, these educated engineers will be needed to help design more efficient, reliable, and cost-effective machines. Doing so will usher in further economic growth, as companies will be able to cheaply and quickly create multitudes of products.
The Supply of New Workers to Meet the Demand
College work in engineering is among the most difficult and testing of any major. Classes include rigorous studies of various high level mathematics and physics disciplines including Calculus 2, Multivariable Calculus, Thermodynamics, and Fluid Mechanics. Many seek out tutoring help at their respective universities, form study groups with friends, or attend office hours with professors. However, lots of engineering students take on extracurricular responsibilities in clubs, fraternities, or intramural sports. This means appointments with tutors, friends, and university staff can be hard to keep.
As a result, many college students are turning to online resources, like Course Hero (which provides an in depth overview of what the company is about including description, reviews, interview feedback,) to aid them in their work. This site has a service, among others, that allows students from all over the country to upload study guides and flashcards for others, making for a community that spans grade levels. Additionally, there is an entire part of the site dedicated to homework for students stuck on problems or just struggling to internalize concepts they’ve learned in class.
Hence, automated machinery is going to play a huge role in companies in the future. As a matter of fact, it has already begun to do so. As such, college-educated STEM workers are going to be needed in high demand. These busy body students are also beginning to turn to online resources to aid them in their studies, which are becoming a crucial part of shaping the future’s engineers.