Connecting with elementary school girls and making STEM approachable.
Looking at their lava lamp in wonder, two third graders see the product of their experimentation during a day of science at Lab on May 5 2018.
Community outreach and civic engagement are a primary initiative of WiSTEM. The "leaky pipeline" issue starts long before high school, and so sometimes, girls don't even have the option to pursue STEM in the first place. In all of our different communities, our chapters look to give back and work with elementary school girls in underprivileged neighborhoods to ensure equal opportunity and stimulate interest.
We hold quarterly events with whimsical workshops run by high schoolers where elementary school students attend and observe what science can look like beyond worksheet problems.
We also work technically with these students through tutoring and coming in to run STEM-related activities at their schools, as oftentimes their institutions don't have the resources or time to implement similar programs.
We hope that through our outreach program and initiatives, we make STEM approachable at a younger age. Moreover, we don't just want to make sure that girls aren't discouraged, we want to make sure that they feel supported if math or science is their favorite subject. Through this, we are able to be civically engaged in a field we're passionate about and give back to communities that have done so much for us.