For Girls In Science Encourages Girl Scientists!
L'Oréal USA's For Girls In Science program launched this January and encourages girls to learn about the science fields in a new and more engaging way.
We recently spoke to Suzie Davidowitz, senior vice president of corporate communications at L'Oréal USA, about the success the program has already achieved and what we can do to get girls interested in science!
L'Oréal USA launched the For Girls in Science website just this January as an extension of the For Women In Science program, which has been around for 10 years.
Before creating the site, L'Oréal's teams explored how girls and their mothers perceive science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM, fields and how to best garner their interest.
"Our goal for the For Girls In Science website is to foster a much-needed community for young girls," Davidowitz said.
In order to do that, the website showcases a diverse group of women scientists in a number of cool careers and informs girls about all of the job opportunities opened up by pursuing STEM fields. It also encourages them to connect with other girls who are also interested in STEM.
"The website serves up science, technology, engineering and math in a way that is engaging, and interactive," Davidowitz said. "It features videos of REAL women scientists on the job, a career personality quiz, facts on inspiring women in STEM, and career opportunities in STEM fields."
The site is also a resource for locating summer and weekend STEM camps for girls. They also have a "Share & Connect" blog where women students and scientists tell their STEM stories.
Currently, men outnumber women about 7 to 3 in STEM fields. For Girls In Science aims to even the playing field.
"Our focus groups validated that many young girls are passionate about science, technology, engineering, and math but often fall off the path to pursuing careers/ higher education in STEM because they don't see role models they can relate to, or experience science in ways that are compelling to them," Davidowitz explained. "We are working to change the ratio."
The goal of the For Girls In Science programs is to find the best ways to keep STEM fields relevant and relatable to girls.
L'Oréal USA was founded by a scientist, and has ever since been committed to science. The company has also shown commitment to advancing women in science careers. In fact, 70 percent of L'Oréal's Research and Innovation employees across the world are women.
"Sometimes when you step back and look at the finished product, let's say a lipstick, you forget how much science, innovation and research went into that single product," Davidowitz said. "This is what we hope to remind young girls of – that there is science in everything."
Women make up half of the world's population. It only makes sense that they should be making half of society's advances.
"It's important for young girls to be curious, to take chances and not to get discouraged if they don't get the best marks in science," Davidowitz said. "Just keep taking classes in the STEM disciplines and have fun."
For Girls In Science is currently running a Connected Through Stem Sweepstakes , in which the winner will take home a $5,000 scholarship, a new laptop, plus a L'Oréal USA gift pack! To enter, girls can put themselves in an image featuring L'Oréal USA's double helix and share it with the For Girls In Science community.
"We created the L'Oréal Helix as a symbol of the interconnectedness of our community," Davidowitz said. "It's a symbol to rally around, to show support for girls and women in STEM."
So far, they've received thousands of entries.
"We hope the scholarship can help someone pursue a career in the STEM," Davidowitz said.
Intersted in For Girls in Science? Check out their social channels!