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Expanding Your Horizons

Expanding Your Horizons - Science and Math for Girls
Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU)

Objective: To help middle school girls learn about math and science careers.

Participants: Middle school girls, their parents and teachers

Description: The Expanding Your Horizons in Math and Science Program (EYH) is designed to introduce middle school girls to careers in science, math, engineering, and technology (SMET). It's a daylong conference for girls to give them an introduction to the many careers in the math, science, and technology fields. EYH is a national model developed by the Math/Science Network that has been successfully replicated across the country.

Since 1997, MTSU has hosted a conference that has involved over 250 girls each year. The conference includes a keynote address, four hands-on workshop tracks, lunch, and a closing session. The girls select from a variety of workshops lead by women that use SMET in real world applications. Previous EYH conferences have had veterinarians, bankers, college professors, and engineers present workshops. Along with information about how the different careers use SMET, there is also the opportunity for the girls to ask career questions. While the girls are in the workshops, parents and teachers are involved in a separate workshop track on such issues as financial aid for college and helping girls succeed in SMET classes.

MTSU's partners for EYH have included the local Girl Scout Council and the local chapter of the American Association of University Women.

Cost implications and source of funds: The budget for the conference is between $4,000-$5,000. Most of the budget is raised through the $10 fee each girl and parent or teacher pays. There is financial assistance for girls not able to pay the fee. The rest of the budget is raised from contributions from the local Girls Scouts of America chapter and the local chapter of American Association of University Women. The money raised is used to cover the cost of lunch, a tee shirt for each girl, workshop supplies, and a bag of materials each girl takes home.

Time Commitment: The initial conference took appropriately a year to plan. Subsequent conferences have taken the planning committee of six-ten people about four months to plan.

Co-sponsors/Partners: Local Girl Scouts of America chapter, local American Association of University Women chapter, Math/Science Network, and Middle Tennessee State University

Number of chapter members involved: 20-25

Number of girls involved: 250-300 per conference

Outline of Expanding Your Horizons: a detailed outline is available at http://www.mtsu.edu/~eyh/index.html.

Contact information: Judith Iriarte-Gross jiriarte@mtsu.edu. From more information on the program, visit the Web site at http://www.mtsu.edu/~eyh/index.html. Or the Web site for the Math/Science Network http://www.expandingyourhorizons.org/.


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