Engineering careers are one of the fastest growing, highest-paying and most in-demand openings in today’s job market. In the United States women earn close to 60 percent of all associate, undergraduate and master’s degrees and more than half of all doctorate degrees, but only 10 percent of the engineering degrees.
For the Micron Foundation, a driving force in promoting science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) curricula, this presented an opportunity to raise awareness and increase the number of women in science and engineering fields by creating the Girls Going Tech program.
“Girls Going Tech is an opportunity for eighth-grade girls to listen to and hear from mentors that are in technical fields,” said Micron Foundation K-12 Programs Coordinator Cathy Ammirati. “It’s a chance for them to hear about those jobs and consider them for their own future.”
During the Girls Going Tech program, eighth grade girls participate in the day-long event, building electrical circuits and experimenting with simulations of chromatography and wafer fabrication. But more important, the girls had an opportunity to meet women who are leading the way in these careers, as scientists and engineers.
“By engaging at this age and showing these girls that engineering can be fun, that math is fun, and science is fun, they can set themselves up to make great choices through high school and college and their careers,” said Micron Engineering and Construction Manager Beth Elroy. “But this age, when you’re thirteen, fourteen years old, it is a key turning point in these girls’ lives and if I can influence that, that’s great!”