Outreach is an important part of SWE. In SWE’s strategic goals, outreach can fall under both Professional Excellence and Advocacy. Through outreach, we develop girls as future engineers, and we advocate for them to gain the confidence and skills they need to become engineers.
There are many different forms of outreach, and outreach can be tailored to your section’s abilities and desires. Some outreach activities require only a few members and minimal supplies, while others are massive undertakings for scores of girls. Nevertheless, Outreach is important to SWE sections, and is a wonderful way to inspire girls to pursue science and technology!
- Work with the Girl Scouts in your area – visit a troop, hold a patch workshop
- Help out a Lego League team – these teams need an “expert” to help them design their idea for the competition. offer to teach SolidWorks, or to help them program something. They also have to build and program a robot and are always looking for more adults
- Visit a classroom
- Host some high school girls and bring them to college classes
- Have a leadership in STEM event for high school girls – show them how engineers are leaders
- Volunteer to judge a science fair
Got more ideas? Share them in the comments.
Tips to Outreach:
- Divide and conquer – involve as many members as you can in both planning and executing
- Hands-on – the best way to engage girls is a hands-on activity, something they can do and understand STEM
- Allow creativity – instead of a perfectly pre-designed activity, let girls design something and test it
- Competition – if you are making something that moves or accomplishes a goal (Rocket Cars, egg drops, towers, bridges), let the girls have a friendly competition. You don’t even need prizes, just have fun!
If you do any outreach, be sure to log them in SWEeter futures. We have a region goal of reaching 25000 grls this fiscal year. The sections with the most Outreach can win grants for their section to do even more Outreach! First place is $1500, second is $1000, and third is $500.
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