They must know how to fail so they can get back up again and learn from their failure.
As a mechanical engineering professor at Northwestern University, I believe that that's precisely what we should be teaching our students in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) subjects: how to fail. Right now, we do not explicitly teach our students how to fail so that they can get right back up. That's in direct conflict with our goal: to prepare students to play competitively upon graduation. If our students are going to stop deadly pandemics, solve the energy crisis, and cure world hunger and poverty, they will have to be prepared to fail, over and over—and more important, they will need to know how to learn from those failures. STEM innovator Albert Einstein recognized that falling is an inevitable part of innovation; he's quoted as having said, "A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new." Another STEM innovator, Marie Curie attributed her success the fact that, as she put it, "I was taught that the way of progress was neither swift nor easy."