Powerful strategies to motivate girls in STEM

The history of STEM is filled with amazing women who revolutionized our understanding of science. Take Grace Hopper, one of the first computer programmers who went on to become a rear admiral in the United States Navy. Chien-Shiung Wu was a renowned physicist who helped crack the secrets of nuclear physics. Alice Ball saved countless lives by developing a treatment for leprosy, while Ynés Mexía gave us a better understanding of the many plants which make up our environment. The list goes on, and only grows more extraordinary!

Unfortunately, women only make up 28 percent of the STEM workforce. This is because many young girls have struggled to engage with STEM while in school. The reasons for this are numerous, from forced stereotypes to a lack of role models.

As a result, many young women are missing their chance to pursue STEM in higher education, and the world is poorer for it. So, how can educators take steps to correct this imbalance?…Read More

“Biodegradable sanitary pad made out of dragon fruit peels designed by a team of Vientamese girls wins USD 100,000 in The Earth Prize 2022 competition!”

On Friday, March 25th, The Earth Foundation held a fully virtual event, The Earth Prize 2022 Awards Ceremony, to announce the winner and runners-up of the USD 200,000 environmental sustainability competition for teenagers. Team Adorbsies, made up of three young women – Quynh Anh (Dorothy), Uyen and Huyen, from Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, Vietnam – was proclaimed as the victorious recipient of the USD 100,000 grand prize that comes with The Earth Prize 2022 Winner title. The prize money will be split evenly between the team members and the educational program with which they registered for the competition, Summit Education.

The winning idea is the “Adorbsy” biodegradable menstrual pad. As the students explained in their submission, due to a drop in dragon fruit sales caused by the Covid pandemic, Vietnam was suddenly forced to deal with considerable amounts of unsold fruit, with an initial plan of simply burning it. The students had already been thinking of a project linked to making more eco-friendly menstrual pads – as they were virtually non-existent in the Vietnamese market – when Uyen learned about the absorbent properties of dragon fruit. This planted the seed for their Earth Prize project submission.

“This was a very difficult choice for The Earth Prize Adjudicating Panel to make; but Team Adorbsies’ project is an idea turned into a solution that can make a genuine difference”, said Rina Kupferschmid-Rojas, Chair of the Panel.…Read More

Gale Primary Sources Release New Archives Dedicated to Underrepresented Histories

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich. – March 30, 2022 Gale, part of Cengage Group, is supporting academic initiatives in diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) with the release of six new archives on the Gale Primary Sources (GPS) platform. These archives explore the stories of LGBTQ+ communities worldwide, women, Native Americans and other underrepresented communities. Gale Primary Sources provide librarians, students and scholars with historical context on controversial issues from a wide range of perspectives underscoring how the past has shaped today’s political and civil rights movements across the globe.

With the steady increase in misinformation on campus about diversity, social justice and political issues, these archives change the conversation by providing access to original historical primary sources that enable researchers and students to compare resources and make key connections. These latest archives from Gale promote open dialogue and teach critical thinking skills that inspire change and cross-cultural awareness.

“No other resource gives researchers more insights from more perspectives than Gale Primary Sources. The original, first-hand content is meticulously cross-referenced to bring facts into focus and information to life in remarkable new ways,” said Seth Cayley, vice president of global academic product at Gale. “These new additions came from regular discussions with researchers, librarians and students who have emphasized the need to support diversity, equity and inclusion. Our work to bring these stories to life is ongoing at Gale. We are actively working on several projects that will provide a greater representation of the history of minority groups like these.”…Read More

KidWind Supports New Children’s Book Featuring Women in Energy

(Saint Paul, Minn.) November 8, 2021 – Following a successful Kickstarter campaign, the authors of the upcoming book Everyday Superheroes: Women in Energy have partnered with several energy companies. EDP Renewables North America, Enel North America, Orsted, and Pattern Energy are sponsoring copies of the book to be distributed via KidWind’s network of schools and through other national science initiatives for children.   

Everyday Superheroes is a nonfiction book series written by Erin Twamley and Joshua Sneideman focusing on the importance of multicultural representation of women in STEM. The second illustrated book in this series introduces elementary students to 26 energy careers and shows how heroes around the world are powering our planet from the national labs to large renewable energy farms.

“I have known Erin and Joshua for years, we recently reconnected at the 2021 Renewable Energy Education Summit (REES) we organized last winter, said Michael Arquin, founder of KidWind. “One of the major outcomes of REES was the need to broaden and diversify the renewable energy education workforce. With that in mind, I am thrilled to support these two authors as they work to get the book into the hands of as many students as possible.”…Read More

Reimagining schools as remote employers

In 2020, working from home became “the new normal,” with workers across all sectors figuring out how to do as much of their work as possible online. Long before COVID, sectors outside of public education began embracing remote work. A U.S. Census Bureau survey from 10 years ago found that remote work was growing everywhere except the public sector, where the percentage of remote workers remained low. In public education, that changed suddenly and dramatically in 2020. But what does the normalization of remote work mean for schools?

To think about retaining employees, schools need to think about retaining women, and particularly working moms. Women represent a majority of the workforce in schools, and educational services is among the most popular career path chosen by working mothers. Yet women also exhibit a stronger preference for working from home. One recent survey found that women placed “flexibility” at the top of their list of priorities when selecting a job, and ranked both “ability to work remotely” and “flexible schedule” on their top 5 needs from a job. Over 80 percent of working moms who opted not to work say they would have continued working if there had been an option to work from home.

While some roles within schools will continue to feel very rooted in the buildings, people will be looking for ways to inject more flexibility into their jobs. Educators, administrators, and service providers evolved and adapted to a remote working environment for over a year, and moving forward we need to consider where remote work may be able to continue beyond the pandemic.…Read More

imagiLabs raises $300k pre-seed to further bridge the gender gap in coding

imagiLabs (www.imagilabs.com), the all-female founded startup that makes coding more accessible to young girls, has raised $300k (€250k) in pre-seed funding, allowing it to further equip the next generation of working women with critical coding skills.

Angel investors participating in the round include Eros Resmini, Founder & Managing Partner at The Mini Fund and the former CMO of messaging platform Discord; David Baszucki, CEO of gaming giant Roblox; members of Atomico’s Angel Program; and Propel Capital, the investment arm of Stockholm’s leading tech incubator Sting. 

A number of high profile proponents of gender equality in technology participated in the round. The financing will be used to maintain imagiLabs’ significant international growth and to continue to foster an engaged community of young girl coders, who use the imagiLabs apps to learn from each other, share coding tips and designs, and build relationships.…Read More

Interactive Field Trips Offered to Educators for Black History Month, President’s Day, Women’s History Month and Earth Day

In preparation for several upcoming significant historical, cultural and societal events, the Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration (CILC) has curated a list of live, interactive virtual field trips that educators can access to enrich discussions surrounding Black History Month, President’s Day, Women’s History Month and Earth Day. The diverse list of interactive learning experiences ranges from an immersive underground railroad experience to an exploration of women war reporters who have made indelible marks in the world of journalism. Several of the offerings are free to the public, while others have a fee associated.

Virtual expeditions have gained in popularity in recent years and even more so since the start of the COVID-19 global pandemic. What sets CILC and its content collaborators’ programs apart from traditional web-based experiences (prerecorded) is the live interactive aspect. Museum curators, historians, authors, researchers, and other expert instructors engage directly with students during the virtual field trip to create a richer learning environment. The selections below offer an engaging resource to educators who want to expand their curriculum in a unique and authentic manner.

BLACK HISTORY MONTH, FEBRUARY 2021…Read More

What motivates girls to pursue STEM?

It’s a persistent and troubling problem: Why are girls so underrepresented in STEM clubs and subjects in K-12 through college, and why are there so many more men than women in STEM fields?

The call for equal representation is becoming louder, and society is striving to solve glaring gender gaps in STEM graduates and STEM fields across the country. The numbers tell an alarming story about female representation in STEM education and fields.

According to Girls Who Code, fewer than 20 percent of computer science graduates are women. Today, only 24 percent of computer scientists are women, and by 2027, just 22 percent of women will be represented in the field.…Read More

Women in Technology Scholarship

The Falling Colors Foundation’s Women in Technology Scholarship will be awarded to a New Mexico high school senior girl who writes the best essay covering some or all of the following topics:

What about technology interests you?
Have you ever worked on a technology project? If so, what did you learn?
How can technology be used to improve lives?
What technological skills are you interested in pursuing?

 …Read More

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New Trump laws will support women in STEM fields

President Donald Trump has signed two bills aimed at increasing the number of women who pursue entrepreneurial endeavors and space-related STEM careers.

“Currently, only 1 in every 4 women who gets a STEM degree is working in a STEM job, which is not fair and it’s not even smart for the people that aren’t taking advantage of it,” Trump said in remarks during the signing. “It’s unacceptable that we have so many American women who have these degrees but yet are not being employed in these fields. So I think that’s going to change. That’s going to change very rapidly.”

The Promoting Women in Entrepreneurship Act authorizes the National Science Foundation “to encourage its entrepreneurial programs to recruit and support women to extend their focus beyond the laboratory and into the commercial world.”…Read More