STEM Program

Science, Technology, Engineering and Math STEM Logo

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math

The demand for skilled workers in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics is becoming increasingly important because in our 21st century global economy, most jobs will require a basic understanding of math and science.  It is important that students explore the options that will open for them when they pursue STEM fields of study. STEM education creates critical thinkers, increases science literacy and enables the next generation of innovators. 


Learn More About STEM

To learn more about OJC's STEM program, visit the STEM Degree page,  STEM Support page,  the STEM Camp page or read more about the program details below.

Why STEM?Chemistry student

• STEM skilled workers can earn 17% more than non-STEM skilled workers. The demand for those skilled workers in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics has become increasingly important in our global economy.
• STEM education creates critical thinkers; it increases science literacy, and enables the next generation of innovators.
• Innovation leads to new products and processes that sustain our economy. 

Our Mission

• Encourage and inspire more of our best and brightest students, especially those from underrepresented or disadvantaged groups to study in the STEM fields.
• Increase resources available in STEM classrooms and other campus-wide learning environments.
• Provide student support services in remediation and retention in STEM fields.
• Build and maintain strong relationships with local school districts and Colorado institutions of higher learning.
• Improve the content knowledge and professional skills of the STEM faculty.

STEM GrantEngineering

Otero Junior College has been awarded two grants totaling $10.3 million through the United States Department of Education Title III, Part F Hispanic Serving Institution’s STEM grants program to further science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education. Each grant is for a five-year period and includes the following projects:

The Success in STEM grant has allowed the College to develop additional STEM courses in agriculture and life science and to update technology, equipment, and facilities on campus. Grant funds have been used to build a Math and Science Learning Center that is incorporated into the OJC Learning Commons

The Semillas de STEM (Seeds of STEM) grant is a cooperative grant with Trinidad State Junior College that is enabling the two community colleges to work together to increase the number of students completing courses and degree programs in math, physical science and engineering, and ultimately transferring to four-year institutions.

• Another aspect of the STEM grant is the development of additional courses and programs of study in STEM fields, and in turn, increasing the number of students who choose to study within those programs. Resources that are being made available to students include increased academic support services through additional tutoring, and a summer bridge program specifically geared toward STEM courses.Robot

• The grants allow the College to work with students who plan to obtain a higher degree in a STEM field to make a seamless transfer to a four-year college or university of their choice. Through assisting students with transfer research and working to develop new and expanded articulation agreements with four-year institutions, students who pursue a higher degree in a STEM field should be able to transfer seamlessly once they have completed their degree at OJC.

• Outreach education and providing STEM experiences to area K-12 students is another important aspect of the grant. Year-round programming is provided to K-12 students that brings students to campus to experience unique STEM events as well as outreach experiences in the schools by STEM staff.

Careers and Job Outlook for STEM Fields 

Biological Technicians

Agricultural and Food Science Technicians

Environmental Science and Protection Technicians

Forensic Science Technicians

Biomedical Engineers

2012 Median Pay $39,750 per year

$19.11 per hour 

2012 Median Pay $34,070 per year

16.38 per hour

2012 Median Pay $41,240 per year

$19.83 per hour 

2012 Median Pay $52,840 per year

$25.41 per hour

2012 Median Pay $86,960 per year

$41.81 per hour 

Entry-Level Education Bachelor’s degree

Entry-Level Education Associate’s degree

Entry-Level Education Associate’s degree

Entry-Level Education Bachelor’s degree

Entry-Level Education Bachelor’s degree

Number of Jobs, 2012 80,200

Number of Jobs, 2012 25,900

Number of Jobs, 2012 32,800

Number of Jobs, 2012 12,900

Number of Jobs, 2012 19,400

Job Outlook, 2012-22 10%

Job Outlook, 2012-22 3%

Job Outlook, 2012-22 19%

Job Outlook, 2012-22 6%

Job Outlook, 2012-22 27%