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A few weeks ago I had the extra special opportunity to visit Google Headquarters in San Jose, California, courtesy of Disney Junior’s Miles from Tomorrowland and Google. The purpose of the visit was to listen in on a panel of experts discussing how to encourage kids, especially girls, to pursue careers in coding and other STEM subjects. As you probably know, STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Our nation is already running short of prepared young people who can fill these jobs, and, in the future, the deficit looks like it will be much worse. So if there are kids in your life and you want to nurture their inner STEM selves, stay tuned for tips and fantastic resources for helping with the nurturing.
But first, I just wanted to share a couple of comments from the panelists, which included the following experts:
NASA’s Johnson Space Center’s Yvonne Cagle shared, “I always knew I wanted to be an Engineer, because I wanted to go to space, but there were no role models at the time for me, so I became a physician first…”
Angela Navarro, a Google engineer, shared that at Google they looked into why women weren’t choosing STEM careers. They discovered that the decision was often being made when women were still girls, as teens and even tweens, and the “number two reason” girls weren’t choosing STEM careers was “perception,” they perceived STEM careers as “anti-social, a male role, [and] that there is no room for women in that role.”
The number one reason?…. lack of parent encouragement!
So here is a great resource for encouraging girls to think about things they can do with coding, including some things they may not have considered before. Bringing girls and coding together needs support from parents, teachers, educational institutions, and employers.
And here is a short video from Google about Made with Code. (If you are reading this post via email and cannot see the video, just click on the title of this post at the top of your email to go to Mama Latina Tips to see it, thanks!)
Last, but not least, encouraging girls to pursue STEM fields including coding/computer science is a theme that is woven throughout the Miles from Tomorrowland series on Disney Channel. In fact, I wanted to remind and encourage everyone to watch Miles from Tomorrowland, “The Discovery Expedition,” this Friday, December 4 at 10:30 am ET/PT on the Disney Channel, where Loretta uses her coding skills to discover a hidden planet. Check out the featurette right here:
(If you are reading this post via email and cannot see the video, just click on the title of this post at the top of your email to go to Mama Latina Tips to see it, thanks!)
Enjoy and keep on coding!
Thanks to the Walt Disney Studios for the invitation, lodging, and transportation to Google. All comments, opinions and my love for STEM subjects are my own. This is not a sponsored post.