160 sixth-graders complete GE Girls STEM program and solve yearlong biofuels mystery course

GE Girls at GE Lighting engaged 160 sixth-grade students from 15 schools in Northeast Ohio in a yearlong, hands-on, project-based programming.

Image credit: http://pressroom.gelighting.com/
“GE Girls enthusiastically work on final watchtower project at the GE Girls End-of-Year Summit at Progressive Field.” Image credit: http://pressroom.gelighting.com/

This year’s program launched in October 2014 at Case Western Reserve University and is in partnership with the University and Cleveland Play House.

Led by GE Volunteers, 160 girls took part in the GE Girls STEM program that was designed to boost the girls’ interest and participation in the areas of science technology, engineering and mathematics. Since its inception in 2010, more than 300 girls have participated in the GE Girls program.

“STEM is an exciting, promising field to pursue, and our girls are discovering both their love for it and their ability to succeed through engaging activities,” said Maryrose Sylvester, President & CEO of GE Lighting, in a news release.

“GE Girls has empowered these young women to reach their full potential, encouraging them to build their futures around fields of study with endless opportunity.”

The students worked in teams learning special lessons in life sciences, electronics, chemistry, computer science, architecture and physics.

A STEM leadership role model panel that included Sylvester; Barbara R. Snyder, President of Case Western Reserve University; Jane Christyson, CEO of Girl Scouts of Northeast Ohio; and Laura Kepley, Artistic Director of the Cleveland Play House, spoke to the girls about STEM careers and took part in the morning activities.

At the very end of the program, all participants joined forces on a hands-on activity to create a marshmallow-supported watchtower and finally learned the outcome of the yearlong mystery they were trying to solve.

“My favourite parts about the watchtower are building with my friends and the teamwork. I like how GE Girls teaches me new things that we don’t learn in regular classes, and we have fun while learning,” said Tamia Farris, GE Girls participant and sixth-grade student at Caledonia Elementary in East Cleveland.

“I loved building a burglar alarm in one of the sessions and learning about circuit boards and what makes something work. GE Girls inspires me to be a biomechanical engineer when I grow up. I want to study medicine and design technology to treat illnesses, build nanobots and stuff like that. I’m going to be the first woman to cure cancer,” added Christina Troyer, GE Girls participant and sixth-grade student at Carylwood Intermediate School in Bedford.

For more information about the program, please go to http://www.gelighting.com/LightingWeb/gegirls/.

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