AUSTIN, Texas—Careers in Engineering for Women, an outreach program for middle school girls at The University of Texas at Austin designed to increase the representation of women in engineering and technical fields, will conduct a one-week residential camp on campus next June.
Eighty girls from across Texas will be selected for the camp, which is sponsored by the Women in Engineering Program of the College of Engineering. Last year, more than 450 young women applied to the engineering program.
The Women in Engineering Program is accepting applications for Careers in Engineering for the camp through Jan. 31 (postmarked). Girls selected will participate in one of two, one-week sessions. Session dates are June 9-15 and June 16-22. A brochure and application are available on the Women in Engineering Program’s Web site by following the Applications link at www.engr.utexas.edu/wep. Applications also have been mailed to Texas middle school counselors and science and math coordinators.
The purpose of Careers in Engineering for Women is to motivate young women to pursue a career in engineering, to develop teamwork, communication and problem-solving skills, and to familiarize the students with the broad opportunities that an engineering degree can offer.
"Although women make up about half of the overall population, less than 10 percent of employed engineers and 22 percent of UT Austin undergraduate engineering students are women," said Tricia Berry, a chemical engineer who is director of the Women in Engineering Program. "Research indicates girls historically have been directed away from advanced math and science classes, which provide the academic preparation crucial to a successful engineering career. One of our goals is to counteract that trend so girls can maintain their confidence and be successful."
During the Careers in Engineering for Women program, teams of five girls will learn problem-solving and teamwork skills as they participate in an engineering design challenge.
The Careers in Engineering for Women program is funded by 3M, AMD, Applied Materials, Duke Energy, ExxonMobil, Ford Motor Company, Motorola, Samsung Austin Semiconductor, Schlumberger, SENSR Fund, Siemens and Texaco. IBM loaned nine laptop computers for the participants to use during each session.