Friday, August 7, 2015

Girl Scouts Explore STEM

A group of Girl Scouts have been spending the summer discovering and exploring in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields as part of a series offered by Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast for girls attending the Norfolk United for Children Summer Enrichment Program. During the series, the girls have had the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of STEM activities, including making electromagnets and building rockets.

Earlier this week, girls at P.B. Young, Sr. Elementary School welcomed a special guest to their series, Dr. Shamina Aubuchon, who works as an assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Hampton University. Dr. Aubuchon shared with the first and second graders what she does as a biomedical research scientist and talked to them about the wide variety of careers in science.

“When I was growing up, I wanted to be an astronaut, and then I wanted to be a doctor, but I always loved science,” Dr. Aubuchon told the girls. “Scientists are always asking questions about the world and trying to figure out how things work.”

After hearing from Dr. Aubuchon, the girls explored the world of electrical engineering with snap circuit kits. Using the prewired connectors, the girls snapped together a variety of circuits to power a lightbulb and a speaker.

According to the Girl Scout Research Institute study, Generation STEM: What Girls Say About Science, 81 percent of girls see themselves as smart enough to have a career in STEM, many do not consider it to be their number-one career option. In fact, in today’s world, women hold only about 25 percent of the STEM careers. Girl Scouts is working to fill the gap by engaging girls in opportunities to learn from women in STEM who inspire them to envision themselves in similar careers.