3 Troops Exploring STEM and Making A Difference #LikeAGirl!
What do Always #LikeAGirl, P&G, Jet.com, Walmart, and Girl Scouts of the USA have in common? They teamed up to help girls unleash the confidence to keep going #LikeAGirl and stick with STEM! Many girls report a fear of failure as it relates to STEM and this negatively impacts their participation in STEM fields and projects. To help inspire more girls to grow into confident STEM pioneers, these organizations hosted the #LikeAGirl STEM academy for Girl Scouts in Hoboken, NJ in April 2018.
Our council was lucky enough to be able to send three Cadette troops to the conference, who joined forces with other troops from across the country to participate in this unique event.
Here’s a little taste of what the girls experienced at the conference in the words of Melissa Moody, co-leader of Troop 32309, and Mayumi Hall, co-leader of Troop 30149:
“We met and spent time with GSUSA CEO Sylvia Acevedo, as well as a NASA Jet Propulsion Engineer, a science advisor from the Obama Administration, actress Abigail Breslin and other amazing women. Oh – and did I mention: all of them were former Girl Scouts themselves!
The girls spent the day learning about a variety of different STEM careers and learning how to build circuits and program algorithms. As part of this program, the girls completed a series of engineering tasks for their Think Like an Engineer journey, and to conclude, they have to complete a Take Action project.” -Melissa Moody, Co-Leader
“Each one had a different take on the best part of the STEM Academy. One was excited about meeting the CEO, Sylvia Acevedo. One was impressed with the working environment at JET.COM. All were inspired by the STEM teachers and their accomplishments. Of course, they also loved being close to NYC.” – Mayumi Hall, Co-Leader
After the conference, each troop had to complete a Take Action project. And with some hard work and a dash of Girl Scout spirit, these troops all found a unique way to make an impact #LikeAGirl!
3 Troops, 3 Take Action Projects
Troop 32309’s Project
“They decided to design and build bat houses for our local Girl Scout camps, to help control the number of mosquitoes they experience while camping. During the STEM Academy, they met their mentor, Barbara, who is an engineer at P&G, to discuss their Take Action Project. Barbara helped them think through key deliverables for their project, as well as things to keep in mind when designing (does it need to be waterproof? Where will you put them up? How?). The girls took copious notes and came away even more excited about finishing their project once we returned home.
During this trip, I think it finally clicked with all the girls: there is nothing they can’t do! Don’t get me wrong: my co-leader and I have been telling them that for 4 years. But, when the girls saw these amazing women succeeding in careers they loved (in STEM-related careers), they finally saw the big picture.”
Troop 30508’s Project
The girls began a Take Action project to provide animal food to community food banks that either do not supply animal food or lack having enough animal food to meet the need. The troop solicited donations of pet food and resealable bags from community retailers and were able to make their first delivery to the Dayton Foodbank recently. Then they shared their story with the community via the Dayton Daily News:
Troop 30149’s Project
“Their STEM project was to enrich the sustaining Veterans Memorial project by educating 5th graders about the number of veterans in the community and in the state of Ohio. They first gathered the statistics of veterans in the local area and in Ohio. Then they analyzed the data about the veterans using their Math skills. Along with the analysis and comparison of data, the girls made 5th graders aware of the upcoming Veterans Memorial in the local park called Orchardly Park.
The girls strongly believe that the awareness of the veterans in the community among the 5th graders will be enhanced further by the new Veterans Memorial. For this STEM project, Girls did two ‘Veterans in our community’ presentations at two different elementary schools in town on Thursday, May 10th.
The STEM Academy has given them the sense of pride and the belief that they can do good things for the community. I have personally seen a transformation of these girls. I am very proud of the girls in Troop 30149.”
Does your troop want to explore STEM and make a difference in their community too? Check out one of our new STEM Journeys: Think Like an Engineer, Think Like a Programmer, and Think Like a Citizen Scientist. Each one helps girls increase their confidence with STEM topics as they try hands-on activities and complete a Take Action project. You can find the requirements on the Volunteer Toolkit.
Soon your troop will be brimming with STEM confidence as they learn problem solve #LikeAGirl!