( science technology engineering mathematics )
Ella King FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Director of Outreach, WOW STEM
ellaking (at) g.harvard.edu
Harvard graduate students launch A World of Women in STEM (WOW STEM),
new educational platform to inspire love of science in middle and high school girls
Website aims to address STEM gender gap by increasing visibility of female scientists
Cambridge, MA: On Sep 3, 2021, a group of Harvard graduate students
launched a new educational platform, A World of Women in STEM
(wowstem.org), an online space for curious young girls to get inspired
by other women+ scientists, both historic and modern. By increasing
the visibility of women and gender minorities in STEM, the founders of
WOW STEM aim to enable young students to imagine themselves as
scientists and encourage their curiosity about the world around them.
“WOW STEM is an inclusive space to learn, explore, and get inspired,”
says president and founder Madelyn Leembruggen. “We are building
the online platform I wish I had as a middle schooler.”
Made up of scientists, writers, artists, and editors from universities across the country, the WOW STEM team produces educational content highlighting the contributions that women+ have made to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The site includes original posts and videos (cross-posted to the WOW STEM YouTube channel) focused on inspiring figures throughout the history of women+ in STEM. It uses their stories as a jumping off point into accessible explanations of their discoveries, fundamental ideas in science, and cutting-edge research. Each video is accompanied by an in-depth blog post, related resources for deeper learning, and at-home activities.
In a time when online spaces are increasingly central to learning, educational platforms like WOW STEM can be key resources for expanding the educational canon and filling in neglected gaps. “Women have always been an essential part of science, but their achievements and discoveries have often been under-recorded and under-valued,” says lead writer Caroline Martin. “When I was in high school, I didn’t learn about a single woman in my physics classroom. We’re trying to change that.”
With educational content targeted for middle and high school girls, WOW STEM hopes to spark a lifelong love of STEM. “I didn’t know that I could do science as a career until college,” notes director of media and vice-president Taylor Contreras, “so I hope that this website inspires young women to see themselves as scientists.”
Now that the site has launched, WOW STEM will release new content every two weeks, with additional posts across social media platforms (@wowstem on Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter). Thanks to support from both the American Physical Society Forum on Education and Harvard University’s John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Science, WOW STEM aims to grow into a broad repository of knowledge and resources to fuel young girls’ interest in science, math, and technology.
WOW STEM Board (clockwise from top left): Justina Yang, Caroline Martin, Katie Fraser,
Taylor Contreras, Madelyn Leembruggen, and Ella King
Download a PDF version of the press release