Encouraging girls to pursue STEM careers and inspire them to become future leaders

GIRL (Girls in Robotics Leadership) Camp is a FREE week-long summer camp for middle school girls fully funded by NapaLearns focused on:

  1. Motivating girls in middle school through peer mentoring by female college and high school  students to learn leadership and STEM concepts through an exciting robotics-based curriculum
  2. Providing life-changing experience and inspiration to campers, encouraging them to pursue computing related STEM careers and post-secondary studies

Inspiring young girls to gain interest in science and technology through creating robotics clubs on their respective school campuses, outreaching to elementary schools, and participating in RoboPlay Competition

The Challenge

  • Male students were more likely than female students to take engineering (3% versus 1%) and computer science courses (7% versus 4%) and enrolled in AP computer science A at a much higher rate (81% males; 19% females).
  • Women remain underrepresented in the science and engineering workforce, although to a lesser degree than in the past, with the greatest disparities occurring in engineering, computer science, and the physical sciences
  • Women make up half of the total U.S. college-educated workforce, but only 29% of the science and engineering workforce.

Our Work

We are partnering with the C-STEM Center at UC Davis to host an annual camp for middle school girls. The inaugural camp took place at Napa Valley College. Camp participants had access to computers, iPads, and robots provided by NapaLearns, and the camp included lunch each day, a guided tour of NVC, plus a field trip to UC Davis for tours of its campus and engineering labs. Offered on a first come, first served basis, the camp was free of charge. Here’s what they had to say:

At the end of the camp, student teams created a multimedia presentation of their robot creation, including a video for RoboPlay Video Competition, and presented it to parents and peers.

“Thank you so much for giving us this opportunity to learn about STEM. I now feel like I could pursue a career in this field!” ~ Quinlin

“Thank you so much for sponsoring GIRL Camp. I learned a lot during the camp like new lines of code and how to work as a team. ~ Mariana

“Your program taught me about coding and working together in a group. It was a great experience going to UC Davis and visiting their engineering labs.” ~ Blythe

Lizbeth Gonzalez, a camp leader who is majoring in electrical engineering, explained that robotics teaches many different skills. “The girls used linkbots to better understand math and STEM in general,” said Gonzalez. “The girls learned math, computer science, and leadership skills. This camp was important because robotics and computer science are male-dominated fields. The camp made STEM less intimidating and it’s important to increase the number of women in these fields.”

Our Participating Schools

Napa Valley Unified School District
Middle schools: American CanyonBlue OakHarvestRedwoodRiverRobert Louis Stevenson Silverado Middle SchoolsNapa Valley Language AcademySt. Vincent Ferrer School