Increasing the population of women in STEM. Projections show that the U.S. will need to fill 6.6 million STEM jobs over the next 10 years. Although women are becoming more educated than ever before-making up half of all workers with postsecondary degrees-they compose just 25% of workers in STEM fields.
As a biopharma leader, we are committed not only to science, but also to building our leadership pipeline internally, and encouraging adolescent girls externally to continue to pursue their interest in STEM. A recent London School of Economics study finds that because of "conformity to social expectations, gender stereotypes, gender roles and lack of role models," girls start losing interest in STEM at around age 15.
Our Chairman and CEO, Brent Saunders, recently issued a blog post on Linkedln (June 21, 2017) with a call to action for organizations -and individuals -to actively support the interest that adolescent girls have in the area of STEM. In addition to this call to action, the Allergan Foundation is a proud supporter of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE), which has extensive outreach to adolescent girls through hands-on exercises, mentorship, and more.
Another example of an external partnership was in July 2017. Allergan hosted a group of 30 girls ages 4-12 at the Irvine, CA campus for a special day oflearning. Through an initiative called Project Scientist, the girls visited Allergan to learn about careers in STEM. For these future female scientists -and for the Allergan employees who met them -the event was nothing short of inspiring.
Internally at Allergan, our focus on supporting women in STEM begins with the talent we attract. We actively recruit for top talent in our industry, but given our focus on this important area, we are able to attract more women to our organization. This summer, our R&D interns were 58% female, and this was similar in 2016 when we actively recruited 57% females for our R&D internships. For our full-time hires; thus far, in 2017, women make up 61% of our R&D new hires.
R&D interns in 2017 were 58% female. Women thus far make up 61% of our R&D new hires.