How We Started
Cyndy Hagin, founder of STEMagination™, teaches a pre-engineering class and coaches robotics and MESA (Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement) at the middle school level. She noticed that the number of girls in her engineering classes, and on her robotics teams were quite low in comparison to the number of boys. Phil Hays, a high school engineering and robotics teacher, also noticed the same low numbers. In an effort to increase the number of girls taking engineering courses he developed a summer camp in 2011 that would engage girls in a variety of engineering and robotics activities with high school girls as mentors. The two engineering teachers (Cyndy and Phil) got together to offer the “Girls Lead the Way” summer camp. The camp was such a success that the next summer an “Intermediate” camp was offered as well as the original “Beginner” camp.
Following the camps, girls were VERY EXCITED about engineering and technology! So the question became, “How can we nurture that enthusiasm throughout the year?” STEMagination™ was created to help support and expand the STEM experiences being offered to girls. We would like to offer follow-up “STEM Saturdays”, as well as expand into the upper elementary grades by hosting a “Young Ladies’ Engineering Day” during National Engineers Week.
There has also been interest in topics other than engineering and robotics. We would like to expand our summer camp offerings to include web design, video game design and a SCRATCH Camp for 4th-5th grade girls. The beta test for SCRATCH Camp, in August 2013, was quite successful!