STEM Stars is a collaborative project of the YWCA Greater Pittsburgh and Carnegie Science Center. STEM Stars is an after school enrichment program for middle school girls which operates at 23 sites in the Pittsburgh area.
The purpose of STEM Stars is: 1) to improve academic achievement and increase interest in, and awareness of, STEM topics and careers among economically disadvantaged girls; and 2) to decrease opportunity gaps that negatively impact these girls’ successful matriculation through the STEM education pipeline and into STEM careers. STEM Stars addresses barriers associated with middle school girls’ engagement in STEM: inadequate access, opportunity, academic preparation, and attitudinal barriers that limit success and persistence in STEM.
STEM Stars provides: 1) reading, math, and science remediation and enrichment; 2) hands-on project-based STEM activities; 3) life skills development; 4) mentoring; 5) pre-college experiences; and 6) STEM career exploration.
Currently in the third year of a three-year program cycle, STEM Stars in operating in 23 sites in the Pittsburgh Public Schools, Propel Schools, Woodland Hills School district, and McKeesport School District. Check the list to see if STEM Stars is in your school!
STEM Stars Sites:
Allegheny Traditional Academy, Arlington, Carmalt, Colfax, East Hills Community Center, King, McKeesport Founders Hall, Pittsburgh Classical Academy, Propel (Braddock Hills, Hazelwood, Homestead, McKeesport, Northside), Schiller, South Brook, South Hills, Sterrett, Sunnyside, Wadsworth Hall, and Woodland Hills.
If you are interested in being a mentor volunteer, please let us know! Just fill out the form HERE.
According to a 2012 Bayer corporation report, a paltry 25% of working women and 14% of underrepresented minorities are employed in STEM fields – primarily because they were not encouraged or nurtured to pursue STEM studies early on. While women make up nearly half of the work force in this country, they only occupy 25% of all STEM-related jobs. Only 10% of all engineers are women. STEM Stars works to reverse this disturbing trend by bringing STEM to middle school girls, allowing them to explore the fun of STEM and envision themselves in rewarding STEM careers.
STEM Stars targets 1,000 economically disadvantaged girls in grades 6-8 from Pittsburgh, Wilkinsburg, Woodland Hills, McKeesport, and Propel schools. Combined, 75% of students from these districts are eligible for free and reduced lunch (indicator for economically disadvantaged status). 70% of families from these districts are considered low-income; 67% minority, and primarily African American.
STEM Stars is funded through a grant from the United Way of Allegheny County.