Like any great scientist, one of our key objectives is to measure and gather data to help inform our work and provide valuable information to the greater STEM community.
Focusing on attitudinal development, mentoring, and familial and community engagement Project Scientist programs create an environment and atmosphere that foster self-discovery, self-confidence, and encourages girls to envision themselves in non-traditional roles and fields.
At Project Scientist our success is measured by the increase in number of girls and women in STEM majors and careers. We exist to create scientists that will solve our world’s most pressing issues, and we have made great progress.
Over the years, Harvard University and the University of North Carolina Charlotte have observed Project Scientist girls to analyze the effectiveness of our programs. Here is a summary of the results:
- Student interest was higher at the end of the Project Scientist Academy compared to the beginning.
- Students were significantly more likely to see themselves a a scientist, and have met a woman scientist after participation in the Project Scientist Academy.
- Students were significantly more likely to have higher amounts of science career interest and science career knowledge at the end of Project Scientist compared to the beginning.
- Overall, students reported positive changes in indicators of social-emotional / 21st century skills after participation in Project Scientist programs.
Although we are making progress, we are not yet done! The need for Project Scientist was based off a vast amount of research that shows girls with a high skill, aptitude, and talent for the STEM fields are not currently served or identified at a young age. We strive to continue providing girls STEM opportunities at a pace, depth, and breadth commensurate with their talents and interest thus creating a more diverse talent pool for STEM careers.
What We're Doing Now:
- Identifying interested girls and increasing the number of girls enrolled in our programs. — In just five years, we've grown from serving 95 girls to serving over 1,500!
- Changing Project Scientist participants' perception and attitudes toward their future in STEM — outcomes proven by Harvard University and the University of North Carolina Charlotte.
- Assisting Project Scientist participants' entry into STEM majors and careers, and achievement in science awards and scholarships.
- Cultivating best practices for mentoring, curriculum and teacher development in STEM. To date, we have provided professional development for over 100 teachers on STEM equity teaching strategies in partnership with Sci-Girls. Recognized as a Sci-Girls partner and trainer enables us to be one of the few organizations using this PBS-created and National Science Foundation funded curriculum.
- Executing public relations and marketing efforts to change society's perception of girls in STEM.