The Demand

The world needs more people who are well-versed in science to innovate and lead — scientists who can meet today’s challenges and discover the cutting-edge of tomorrow.

Understanding the Need



One million more STEM workers will be needed than universities are presently anticipated to produce.

The federal government predicts a great shortage of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) graduates over the next decade.

To meet this shortage and remain competitive, the United States needs to produce more graduates with bachelor’s degrees in STEM.

The President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology has challenged universities to enroll 1,000,000 undergraduates in the next 10 years.

The new science facility at Cal Lutheran will respond to the national shortage and accommodate the dramatic growth in science majors at Cal Lutheran.

In California


California’s need for STEM workers is growing, and at a faster rate than non-STEM employment prospects.

The California Workforce Development Board states the following in their 2013-2017 Strategic Workforce Development Plan:

If current trends persist, by 2025 California will face a shortage of college-educated labor; only 35 percent of working-age adults are projected to have at least a bachelor’s degree, while 41 percent of jobs will require that level of education or higher. Skills shortages may be particularly acute in the important science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. One study projects that over 44 percent of all STEM jobs will be in occupations with expected shortages.

In Ventura County


Cal Lutheran sits along the Highway 101 Tech corridor, which hosts a growing number of STEM startups and well-established technology-based companies, such as Amgen, Inc.

Hundreds of Cal Lutheran alumni are already employed in the local science and technology industry and the need for more of them is increasing.

  • 34% projected employment growth for environmental scientists and specialists, including health, in Ventura County by 2022. (Center for Leadership and Values)
  • 26% projected employment growth for environmental engineers in Ventura County by 2022. (Center for Leadership and Values)
  • 9% growth in Pharmaceutical & Medicine Manufacturing is predicted. Occupations include medical scientists, architectural and engineering managers, medical and health services managers. (South Central Coast Center of Excellence)
  • Encourage and entice college STEM majors to become K-12 STEM teachers to prepare future generations.

Mary Ellen Cosenza

There's something different and special about Cal Lutheran, and employers can sense that. The alumni have a good sense of themselves and what they're capable of achieving in the workplace. I'm confident the experience they get working in a lab as students, which not everyone gets at the undergraduate level, will provide the skills they need to succeed.

Mary Ellen Cosenza, Ph.D.
Executive Director, U.S. Regulatory, Amgen, Inc. (Retired)


Major Interest

STEM majors are increasingly popular among students at Cal Lutheran. Currently, nearly a third of our students choose a major related to those fields. To continue to provide access to the opportunities our students need, we must expand our capacity for lab and teaching space.

By adding more space than currently exists for research and science learning on campus, it will allow us to meet the needs of our community and the growing demand from our students.

Learn about our faculty

Our STEM programs:


Increase in the number of STEM majors from 2004 to 2016.

Majors chart

Salvador Brito

I had the opportunity to see how a lab works, and I was able to work independently on quantifying protein expression in cells infected with the hepatitis C virus. I feel ready to secure a research position in the future.

Salvador Brito '16
Biology major, Ph.D. program at Harvard
Career goal: Earn a Ph.D. and conduct research in neurobiology