Two organizations came together to inspire middle school girls to enter STEM fields

Published: Sep. 24, 2022 at 5:38 PM CDT
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - Two organizations teamed up this weekend to inspire young girls to go into the STEM field.

The Girl Scouts and Trout Unlimited invited fourteen girls to spend the weekend at Beaver Creek Reserve to explore nature for the STREAM Girls event.

“We thought this year we would make it bigger and better by inviting the girls to stay overnight here at the beautiful Beaver Creek Reserve,” said Carrie Andringa with the Girl Scouts.

After having lunch the girls took a hike to the stream for their first activity, the SREAM Girls event.

It is where the girls walk along the stream nearby and search for bugs and other specimens to help better understand the ecosystem.

Other events on the weekend agenda included fly fishing lessons with demonstration put on with the help of the fly fishing club from UW Stout.

“One of the biggest pillars of Girl Scout programming is outdoors, and STEM is our other one,” said Andringa. “So we want girls to experience STEM science fields in hands on applicable ways.”

Bill Heth with Trout Unlimited recognizes the importance of getting more girls to go into the STEM field.

“we live in a STEM technology world... and what we’re doing is a STEM project that we call stream,” said Heth. “And It is to encourage middle school girls to get involved in STEM projects.”

“They could actually have a more immersive experience with the whole fly fishing process, trout ecosystems, the health of the streams and ecosystems as well has been kind of a cool experience to just be really immersed in,” said Andringa.

Sequoia Wiase joined the program for a second year now, and is one of the girls interested in science.

“I love doing stream stuff and all that sludge and yes, the sciencey stuff too,” said Wiase.

Organizers say the program is open to any girl in middle school who is interested.

“There wasn’t an application process because we kind of wanted to make it accessible to as many as possible... We do have participants that came over from Green Bay, from the Medford area, and of course here locally too,” said Andringa.

And she adds with demand the program will be around for years to come.

For more information on the program, click here.