0
Votes

STEMtastics: Inspiring Middle School Girls to Pursue STEM Careers

Mary Lou Melley, left, AAUW McLean Area Branch member and volunteer, compares notes with parent Janice Harris. Mary Lou’s daughter, Dr. Susan Molinaro, was a STEMtastics presenter, while Janice’s daughter Asia attended to learn more about science-based careers.

Mary Lou Melley, left, AAUW McLean Area Branch member and volunteer, compares notes with parent Janice Harris. Mary Lou’s daughter, Dr. Susan Molinaro, was a STEMtastics presenter, while Janice’s daughter Asia attended to learn more about science-based careers.

Fifty McLean students from Longfellow and Cooper Middle Schools joined students from 35 other schools on March 8 at STEMtastics, a career day event designed to educate and inspire the students to consider careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). Attendance at STEMtastics was "standing room only" when almost 300 middle school girls and 200 parents from Fairfax County listened to keynote speaker Erica Grow meteorologist for WUSA-TV, Channel 9, provide advice and motivation as she discussed her career. Following opening ceremonies, twenty female presenters from across STEM fields ran interactive breakout workshops for the students, while parents attended informational workshops on curriculum, resources, and financing options.

The event was held at the Annandale Campus of the Northern Virginia Community College and was sponsored by the Fairfax City, McLean Area, and Reston-Herndon branches of the American Association of University Women (AAUW), in conjunction with Fairfax County Public Schools and SySTEMic Solutions. AAUW has been a leader in sponsoring STEM education programs and introducing girls to female role models. For more information on STEMtastics or to sign up for information on next year’s program, visit the AAUW McLean Area website at http://mclean-va.aauw.net/stemtastics/ or send an email to mcleanaauw@gmail.com.