National Girls Collaborative Project

November 2012

 Building the Capacity of STEM Practitioners to Develop a Diverse Workforce

NGCP Updates  

Arizona, Louisiana, and California Conduct Successful Kick-Off Events!

Arizona Kick-off eventCongratulations to the Arizona Science, Technology, and Engineering Collaborative (ASTEC) Project for Girls, Louisiana STEM Girls Collaborative Project (LaSTEM GCP), and the California Girls in STEM (CalGirlS) Collaborative Project for their successful kick-off events. These events provided opportunities for organizations to connect and collaborate with others in their regions doing similar work, as well as to meet new partners. A few highlights: Arizona showcased a demonstration from the Physics Factory and provided an opportunity for participants to tour Biosphere 2. Louisiana featured a hand-on breakout sessions with the Emmy award-winning PBS' Design Squad Nation discussing how to boost girls' interest in engineering using multimedia resources and activities with a panel discussion of Louisiana women leaders in STEM. California's highlights included keynote speaker Judy Lee of IDEO and an inspiring panel of girls talking about what encourages them to pursue STEM.

NGCP Webinar: Online Resources and Tools: Using the New NGCP Website to Build Program Capacity

November 28, 2012; 11:00 AM-12:00 PM Pacific
The National Girls Collaborative Project (NGCP) recently launched an enhanced website with easier navigation and more tools and resources. Join us for this informative website tour that will focus on helping programs find relevant links, resources, statistics, and other information to build organizational capacity to offer high quality STEM opportunities to increase girls' interest in STEM.


 Collaborative News  

New Mexico Girls Collaborative in C-STEM Kick-Off Conference

Las Cruces, NM
November 8, 2012; 10:00 AM - November 9, 2012; 3:00 PM Mountain
The New Mexico Girls Collaborative in C-STEM Kick-Off Conference and the New Mexico Celebration of Women in Computing (NMCWiC) will bring together students, faculty, business leaders, informal and formal K-12 educators, and technology experts from across NM and neighboring states to discuss the role of women in today's computing and STEM fields. The goal is to provide an opportunity for women to explore opportunities in computing, to network with other groups from academia, industry, and government, and to create friendships among women and men in the region who share the same interest and passion for computing and STEM.


Colorado Collaborative for Girls in STEM Kick-Off Conference
Denver, CO
November 28, 2012; 8:30 AM - 3:00 PM
Those interested in promoting and supporting girls in STEM are invited to this day of interactive sessions focused on connecting and collaborating to build opportunities for girls in STEM. This event will feature keynote speaker Dr. Violeta Garcia (State of Colorado STEM Coordinator), a poster session showcasing STEM programs statewide, a panel discussion on research and evaluation, and time for networking with colleagues.



NGCP Collaborative Mini-Grants
NGCP mini-grants are designed to enhance access to and build collaboration between programs and resources. Mini-grant application resources, including a sample application, exemplary practices, project ideas, evaluation requirements, frequently asked questions and glossary are available online at: Mini-grant opportunities are currently available in the following Collaboratives:

 Exemplary Practice Spotlight

The Exemplary Practice Spotlight for November focuses on strategies for supporting minority middle school girls' engagement in science. A recent article published by Calabrese Barton and colleagues, Crafting a Future in Science: Tracing Middle School Girls' Identity Work Over Time and Space (2012), presents findings from a case study following Latina and African-American girls from the 6th-8th grades.

The authors conclude that girls are better able to view themselves in science when their identity work is recognized, supported, and leveraged. For example, one girl featured in the article was involved in an afterschool program that supported and recognized her identity work by allowing her to integrate her other interests (ex. music) into her science learning. Importantly, her science teacher allowed her to leverage this experience into further learning in the classroom.

Another girl in the study was deeply engaged in science, from an inquiry perspective, but did not appear as a good science student based on institutional norms and expectations. She did not complete her work on time and was more interested in the process than providing the 'right' answers. This student, although interested, also faced barriers to participating in family science night and a lunchtime science club. As a result, she was seen as 'not good at science' by her teacher and other students, was not recognized or supported, and was not able to leverage her interest in science into science achievement.

Supported by previous work by some of the same authors, Creating Hybrid Spaces for Engaging School Science Among Urban Middle School Girls (2008), this research shows the importance of providing opportunities for minority girls to blend the science world with their world outside of the science classroom.


FabFems Spotlight

FabFems LogoThe FabFems Spotlight highlights women from the FabFems Role Model Directory. There are more than 100 FabFems profiles in the database and entries are added on a daily basis. FabFems are enthusiastic about the science and technology work they do and want to inspire a future generation of FabFems. Encourage girls to visit FabFems to search profiles, connect with role models, and find resources on career pathways. 

Mikel TaylorMeet Mikell Taylor from Boston, MA, whose high school experience on a FIRST robotics team opened her eyes to engineering careers and a passion for robotics. Mikell describes her experience at Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering as "a blast," where she earned her degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering. Throughout college she had the opportunity to participate in internships that exposed her to different companies, skills, networking opportunities, and career pathways. She describes the fortunate circumstance of having lunch with the president of a small robotics company one week, then being offered a job with them the next! Mikell's appreciation for the opportunities she received as a teenager and throughout her career has kept her involved with FIRST, mentoring an inner-city robotics team and helping plan regional robotics events. In her spare time, she loves to read, wander the city with her dog, travel, and write about robots and women in engineering. Mikell has great advice for girls. In regards to limiting interests, Mikell says, "There are plenty of ways to keep up on your non-engineering interests while earning an engineering degree, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise!" Also, while it's good to have a life plan, she offers this advice: "Don't be afraid if you think you want to change your plan, and don't be too upset if someone changes them for you. It's good to have a plan, it's good to think ahead, but sometimes an unexpected deviation from your plan can be one of the best things that ever happens to you." To learn more about Mikell Taylor, visit her FabFems profile at:
If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a FabFem, visit:


Upcoming STEM Events
Computer Science Education Week (CSEdWeek)
December 9-15, 2012
CSEdWeek recognizes the transformative role of computing and the need to bolster computer science at all educational levels. Join teachers, students, parents, and others in this call to action to raise awareness about computer science education and computing careers by participating in CSEdWeek activities and events.


Association for Science Teacher Education (ASTE) International Conference
Charleston, SC
January 9-12, 2013
ASTE 2013 International Conference: Science Education through a Historical and Cultural Lens is dedicated to continuing the professional growth and development of individuals who work in or have a strong interest in issues related to science teacher education at all grade levels. You do not need to be an ASTE member in order to present and/or attend.


Florida Educational Technology Conference (FETC) National Conference
Orlando, FL
January 28-31, 2013
The FETC brings education leaders and technology experts together to exchange techniques and strategies for teaching and learning. Participants will have an opportunity to learn how to integrate different technologies across curricula - from kindergarten to college - while learning about the latest hardware, software, and successful strategies on student technology use. FETC is designed for teachers, principals and deans, district administrators, curriculum designers, media specialists, and technology directors.

November is Native American Heritage Month

Native American traditions are steeped in science and engineering. Native American engineers and scientists have built on that legacy to benefit society. Learn more about notable STEM trailblazers and their contributions by visiting:


Alaska Native Perspectives on Earth and Climate
A free collection of curriculum aligned with traditional ways of knowing which is categorized by elements (spirit, air, fire, water, earth) and by earth systems. Lesson plans and student activities are provided in a variety of media which look at Alaska's unique geology and the impact of development and climate change featuring Alaska Native scientists who are working toward solutions.
Engineer girl
EngineerGirl is a program of the National Academy of Engineering, designed to introduce middle school girls to engineering careers. The website has recently been updated and features a new interface and content such as "Try on a Career," a place to explore different engineering fields. Original features such as the "Gallery of Women Engineers" and "Ask an Engineer," still serve as a regular resource for educators, parents, and students. 
Hispanic Scholarship Fund STEM Brochure
The Hispanic Scholarship Fund has developed a bilingual publication designed to make students aware of STEM opportunities. The publication includes career options in the STEM fields along with steps to take in high school. This resource is ideal for recruitment, college fairs, outreach events, and parent/student workshops. To order copies of this free STEM brochure contact Griselda Macias at [email protected].

NCWIT Case Study: How Does the Physical Environment Affect Women's Entry and Persistence NCWIT Case Study Logoin Computing? Design Physical Space that Has Broad Appeal
This National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) study examines the décor of physical spaces and the conveyed messages about the kinds of people who belong there and the kinds of activities that should be done in these spaces. Research has shown that this effect of stereotyped environments measurably reduces women's interest in declaring a computing major and their anticipated success in computing. Understanding this influence allows us to actively craft a more gender-balanced field. 

Real World Design Challenge
The Real World Design Challenge is an annual aviation design competition that provides high school students the opportunity to work on real world engineering challenges in a team environment. The Challenge is free for students and teachers. Each teacher that signs up a team will receive $1 million in professional engineering software as well as access to mentors from industry, government, and academia. Registration deadline is November 16, 2012.
The STEMinist website focuses on women in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) by aggregating and featuring stories about women in STEM from across the web with the goal to increase the visibility of women in these fields, promote and elevate the perspective of women in these traditionally underrepresented fields, encourage younger women and girls to pursue careers in STEM, and capture a social media snapshot of what is trending for women in STEM.  
Webinar Archive: Steps along the Pathway: Charting an Outcomes-Based Career Development Continuum for Hands-On STEM Programs
ITEST supports the research and development of innovative models for engaging K-12 students in authentic experiences that build their capacity to participate in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and information and communications technology (ICT) workforce of the future. In this archived webinar ITEST Principal Investigators share their work in career-related high school reform and discuss their career development continuum - from career awareness to preparation - highlighting expected outcomes and examples from STEM programs. A PDF of the presentation is also available.
NGCP Program Directory - Search for Collaborating Programs or Register Your Program Today!
The online Program Directory lists organizations and programs that focus on motivating girls to pursue STEM careers. The purpose of the directory is to help organizations and individuals network, share resources, and collaborate on STEM-related projects for girls. When you sign up for the Program Directory, you will enter your program description, resources available within your organization, program and/or organizational needs, and contact information. NGCP has created a publication called Build Your Collaborative Network with the NGCP Program Directory that provides an overview of the Program Directory and how to use it as an effective collaboration tool to maximize impact for your program and/or organization.


 Global Resources

Using Free and Open Educational Resources to Support Women and Girls in STEM
Creative Commons and the OpenCourseWare Consortium announce the formation of a task force to determine how open educational resources (OER) can support the success of girls and women in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) in support of the Equal Futures Partnership, announced on September 24, 2012 by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The OpenCourseWare Consortium is a collaboration of higher education institutions and associated organizations from around the world creating a broad and deep body of open educational content using a shared model. "We are seeking innovative support solutions for girls to succeed in STEM subjects using open educational resources," said Mary Lou Forward, Executive Director of the OpenCourseWare Consortium. "Since OER can be accessed freely by anyone, anywhere, and modified to fit different cultural contexts and learning needs around the world, we are looking at this issue from a global perspective."



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