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Go STEM Program Engages Middle-School Girls in Science and Technology Learning

Young girl doing science project

The lack of young women entering the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) disciplines is a nation-wide problem, and retired Keene High School career counselor Susan Silk is determined to do something about it, at least here in the Monadnock region. She’s created a one-week course called Go STEM through Keene State’s Kids on Campus summer program to engage middle-school girls (those entering grades 6–8) in hands-on activities designed to spark their curiosity to explore and learn through a technology-based project. The girls will design and work on a real project that requires teamwork, critical thinking, and real-life problem solving.

“My research showed that when many girls reach high school age, they just seem to lose interest in STEM classes. They don’t push themselves, or think outside the box enough, so we’re going to get them engaged,” Silk explained. “Though the week should be fun, participants should know that they may need to do some research and be challenged. We plan to get the girls involved from the very beginning, and we’re going to push them to take their critical thinking and problem solving to the next level.”

The full-day classes run from July 25–29 and will be held in the College’s TDS Center. You can register online.

Area Businesses Invited

Silk encourages area companies to be part of this program. She invites them to send their female employees to attend the community day lunch and encourage the kids and be a role model. If your business is interested, please contact Susan Silk.

The program also welcomes financial support for equipment funding or to sponsor a child who may not otherwise have the means to attend such a course (tuition is $200/week). To help, please contact Daniel Henderson, Keene State’s corporate relations officer.

For more information, contact the Keene State Office of Continuing Education at 603-358-2290.