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"Girls in STEM" Program for Second through Sixth Grade Students

Creating a Supportive and Empowering Environment to Ignite Girls' Excitement for and Exploration of STEM Disciplines

With an OC Community Grant through the Foundation, the Los Alamitos Youth Center will expand its 7-week "Girls in STEM" workshop curriculum for young learners to 10 weeks. Los Alamitos Youth Center is a 501c3 established in 1952 and is the longest running nonprofit in Los Alamitos, focused on building pathways to success for children. The Youth Center seeks to ensure the well-being of each youth participant by using a developmental and educational approach in programs that emphasize physical, emotional, creative, and cognitive capacities.

“Our Girls in STEM program was designed by high school senior, Sarah Saadeh, driven by her desire to increase female representation in STEM professions. Sarah’s dream is to empower young, creative females to engineer a better world for future generations, and it is incredible to watch girls go through this program. At first, many do not know what scientist or engineer careers look like – but they become fully engaged in the activities, passionate about science, and then graduate from the experience committed to the field of science.”

Mrs. Lina Lumme, Executive Director and CEO of Los Alamitos Youth Center

About the Program

The "Girls in STEM" program features multi-week workshops with hands-on activities centered around chemistry, weather, engineering, mathematics, presentation and public speaking.

A new addition to the workshops will be coding classes. Emphasis is being placed on coding because it is used to create myriad technologies and has practical applications to personal and professional lives. Participants discover the basics of coding and learn about a variety of careers within the field.

Read a press release about this grant here.

“We’re excited to support worthwhile programs such as Girls in STEM, and to build on the momentum it has created within the Orange County community engaging young girls in hands-on science like volcano experiments, tornado in a jar, and other activities that encourage curiosity. The Los Alamitos Youth Center is working to increase diversity in science through exploration in fun, interactive ways and we’re proud to partner with them in these endeavors.”

Dr. Anne Hultgren, Executive Director of the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation

Images from Girls in STEM's First Presentation Day

On National STEM Day, November 8, 2023, students in the first cohort of the "Girls in STEM" program presented posters about their favorite concepts and remarked on their science career aspirations. What kind of science careers were they interested in pursuing? Oncologist! Scientist! Engineer! Paleontologist! Teacher! Wild animal caretaker!