CSW67 Session report from SISEAP
SISEAP Delegate to CSW67 Judy Toll, reports on a session from International Women's Day event. Stem from Dance.
Young Girls to Stem
The United Nations International Women’s Day celebrations on ‘DigitaALL; Innovation and technology for gender quality on 8 March 2023, highlighted the Stem from Dance organisation. The organisers broadcasted a video on the Stem from Dance program at the breakfast and acknowledged two Stem from Dance members in the audience. Stem from Dance is a not-for-profit organisation in New York transforming the STEM field by empowering girls of colour through the power of dance. The dance program was established due to women of colour being underrepresented in the STEM fields environment. This is due to there being few female role models in STEM, gender stereotypes and a male dominated culture.
The dancing component draws the girls into the course, but the STEM training is strongly inked to the dancing. The girls learn coding and science through dance. Then they decide whether they want to design wearable technology for their costumes or incorporate a light show in their choreography and write the program to control the lights and colours. The program has been successful in serving over 2,000 girls and 82% of the girls now have a much better understanding of STEM. Also 98% of the girls come from historically unrepresented groups in technology. According to the National Science Foundation less than five percent of STEM field
employees are Black, Indigenous, Hispanic or Latina women. Only 19% of college computer and information science majors are women.
Melodie, STEM from Dance Aluma states “Being part of the STEM From Dance community helped me develop an interest for engineering that I am pursuing in college, and being able to take leadership while working as a team gave me the confidence to fight to achieve the future that I want to be part of.”
This program is giving the girls the knowledge, experience, and confidence to dream big in STEM. Without this program it may not have been possible for these girls to gain the knowledge and expertise in the STEM environment and thus potentially limiting their career choices.
CSW67 – Delegate SISEAP