More Than Just Cookies: Girl Scouts Offer Summer STEM Camps

They call themselves ‘the sexy scientists’. It’s a name taken on by 16-year-old Victoria Taylor and her friends — high school-aged girls donning white lab coats who have a passion for science.Just five weeks earlier, they were total strangers.“I’ve made so many friends; we all sit here,” Taylor said, motioning to a white lab table inside the new STEM Center of Excellence in the Mountain Creek area of Dallas. The Center is a part of the Girl Scouts Camp Whispering Cedars. “Every time I come here, I’m looking forward to seeing them and doing experiments with them.”The teens are part of The Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas’ Summer Experience in Antibiotic Discovery and Development (SEADD). It's one of several summer programs in the organization’s initiative to propel young girls to careers the fields of in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, or STEM.“We’ve been doing STEM for 105 years, but this is the first time we’ve done it in a really deliberate way to drive girls into STEM education and then STEM leaders,” said Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas CEO Jennifer Bartkowski.A looming crisisThe idea was brought to life with help from a leader in technology. Texas Instruments, a Fortune 500 company, is one of the sponsors of the camp's STEM center, and helped develop the curriculum for the programs.“They saw a crisis coming,” Bartkowski said of Texas Instruments. “In 2020 there’s not going to be enough women engineers to hire.”  Continue reading...

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