It is known that all throughout the world, girls tend to not get the same opportunities as boys. One place this is most apparent is in STEM fields. Often times, little girls are told by society that science, technology, engineering, and mathematics are for boys. In addition, most toys for young children encouraging the creativity required for such fields are marketed to boys. This often leads to girls being discouraged from entering the field, resulting in unequal representation. In fact, according to Forbes, only one in seven engineers is female, only 27% of all computer science jobs are held by women, and “women have seen no employment growth in STEM jobs since 2000.”
Being on an all-girls robotics team, we have seen a gross under representation of girls at competitions that we have attended. We realize that we have the potential to help put an end to this. Wherever our team goes, we try to encourage other girls (and boys) to try out robotics or any other STEM field that they find an interest in. In the past, our team has reached out to local elementary schools and spoken to them about robotics and how they can create anything they would like if they come up with a creative idea through engineering. Some of our favorite memories include seeing little girls look up to us and tell us that they want to join robotics when they get to middle school because of us. We have also mentored some of those girls, inviting them to come to our meetings and competitions to watch. In fact, Julia, a current member, was mentored by Major Trouble.
In short, we have not only enjoyed being together and collaborating to build a robot on Major Trouble, but we have also decided that we should use our platform to help put an end to the STEM gender gap.