Imagine this...there are one million engineering jobs available yet no college graduates to fill them. This situation may not be so far-fetched. To date, the number of college graduates with engineering degrees has dwindled to an alarming rate while the demand for engineers is expected to increase significantly. In fact, the defense industry alone estimates it will need to hire hundreds of thousands of engineers over the next five years.As an industry leader, Lockheed Martin is helping ease the looming technology talent shortfall and strengthen the workforce pipeline by inspiring today's students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math - also known as STEM."Lockheed Martin works closely with educational leaders and institutions to prepare students for a future career in engineering and technology - including specialized jobs in advanced manufacturing systems," said Lockheed Martin Executive Vice President and Aeronautics President Larry Lawson. "It's critical to the future of our nation that we foster this interest early and encourage our young students to excel in the areas of math and science."Lockheed Martin promotes early STEM education through a variety of programs, events and campaigns that focus on student achievement, teacher development and diversity. In addition to funding STEM education outreach activities, employees serve as local school advisors, extracurricular activity mentors and career role models for students in kindergarten through college.As an example, Lockheed Martin's Engineers in the Classroom education outreach initiative exposes students to a variety of careers that have a foundation in STEM courses. This initiative supports best-practice STEM programs that align with local, state and national standards of learning. Through the Engineers in the Classroom portfolio of programs, Lockheed Martin is able to reach students and educators at various levels of engagement, such as large audience awareness, small group participation and one-on-one interaction.Currently, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics - a company that is known for building the world's most advanced and complex aircraft - has more than 300 trained professionals who visit local classrooms and lead hands-on presentations that encourage students to pursue STEM careers. In 2012 alone, Aeronautics employees working at the Fort Worth facility inspired more than 30,000 local students.Lockheed Martin will sponsor National Engineers Week this year, which runs Feb. 17 through 23. National Engineers Week, also known as E-Week, allows Lockheed Martin to recognize top-notch engineering and technical professionals and leverage this talent to inspire future engineers through community outreach.This year's E-Week theme, "Celebrate Awesome," recognizes engineering professionals and students for the innovative and important work they do every day. Lockheed Martin plans to "celebrate our awesome" during E-Week through a variety of fun events. Students will have the opportunity to fly in a fighter jet simulator during E-Week at the Fort Worth Museum of Science. Students will also have an opportunity to tour the Fort Worth Aeronautics facility and through the Engineers in the Classroom program, employee volunteers will challenge students with hands-on critical thinking activities, while encouraging them to apply engineering principles like problem-solving, teamwork, creativity and innovation to real life situations."Lockheed Martin helps strengthen our surrounding communities by creating and sustaining opportunities within the defense industry," Lawson added. "We will continue to make longstanding commitments that drive innovation, development and productivity, and promoting a STEM education is where it all begins."