Girl power: camp encourages girls to pursue STEM careers

Adrienne Lane-Martin, an interior designer at Erstad Architects, is teaching a group of girls how to draw a full-size building on a piece of paper. Lane-Martin wants girls to know that architecture and design is behind a lot of science and it’s not just a man’s job.

“Unfortunately, architecture is a stereotypical field,” Lane-Martin said. “Girls need to know the field is changing and being an architect is a great job.”

Adrienne Lane-Martin, an interior designer at Erstad Architects, helps a student with her building design.

Eighty girls in grades four through six attended the Boise School District’s fourth annual Girls Powered STEM Camp Thursday morning at Amity Elementary School. There, they participated in an assortment of hands-on experiments within the science, technology, engineering and math fields.

“Girls can do anything,” said Lilly Flock, a sixth grader at Shadow Hills Elementary School. “People need to know that STEM jobs are for everyone, not just boys.”

The goal of the camp is to attract more women to careers in STEM by offering early exposure to role models and experiences in those fields.

“There are no boundaries when it comes to science and math jobs,” said Micaiah Solorzano, a fifth grader at Grace Jordan Elementary.

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The girls rotated through workshops on weather, climate change, robotics, veterinary skills, paramedics and interior design. The workshops were led by professional women who expressed why they love their jobs, what they studied in college and how young girls can get a jump start on their careers.

“The girls need to know about all the career opportunities available to them,” said Chris Taylor, curriculum supervisor at the Boise School District. “STEM jobs are in high demand.”

Another session of Girls Powered STEM Camp will take place on Friday at Garfield Elementary School with 130 girls.

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