THE FUTURE IS NOW. Canadian girls and boys are tomorrow’s Canadian innovators. As young adults they will pursue their own employment paths from among a wide-ranging choice of endeavours, and many will choose careers in science, technology, engineering and math. But not enough according to many sources 1.
And STEM Camp is changing this.
STEM Camp is Canada’s cutting-edge, not for profit, summer camp educational opportunity that engages Canadian youth to choose wisely - at an early age – whatever careers they may wish to pursue, as they make their way through the pre-post secondary learning process.
Thanks to the support of local Members of Parliament, Ontario and Quebec will see an increase from 46 locations to 77 locations across both provinces and – whenever there is a demand - there will be programs in both of Canada’s official languages. 2
During its early years of operation the STEM Camp attendance ratio between girls and boys has been at an unsatisfactory level of one girl to four boys. This summer, STEM Camp’s ratio is expected to dramatically change to the level of one girl to two boys - a significant increase. Early registration for STEM Camp already points in that direction. This change is the result of new tactics to encourage girls to take much more interest in preparing for careers that tended to be male-dominated in the past.
This year, changes in the STEM Camp program include an increase in gender-neutral themes and activities, Also, a significant marketing outreach was undertaken to remind parents that their daughters have a wide range of career choices before them in Canada’s tomorrow. Moreover, more female counsellors – recruited from university and college STEM-related academic programs – will be engaged at STEM Camp locations everywhere.
STEM Camp CEO and Founder, Kevin Cougler: “Canada needs to graduate more students in the subject areas of STEM in order to innovate and be competitive on the world stage. I founded STEM Camp to provide opportunities for youth to be excited and inspired in a fun atmosphere so they have a real chance of pursuing STEM education and to be prepared for a future that will rely heavily on STEM. Young girls are extremely important to this plan and we are very excited that we are seeing excellent results of their increased interest in STEM - but we are always looking for ways to do more”.
STEM Camp released its position paper to the Canadian government in 2017 entitled “A STEM-Powered Citizenry” 3 which brought attention to the future of Canada’s ability to innovate as a nation as being heavily dependent on our ability to attract girls and boys to STEM-based subjects areas. The paper revealed STEM Camp’s purpose and passion: an intentional effort to grow and inspire young inventors, discoverers and makers; to prepare them for a world where the majority of employment opportunities will be STEM related. To accomplish this, STEM Camp needed to find ways to attract girls to its summer camps. This launched a year long campaign that involved an introspective look at its branding, its activities, its marketing materials and its hiring practices. Significant changes were made in all these areas to increase the way in which girls are positioned as our future STEM Champions. The early results are encouraging if not transformational.
STEM Camp will start on July 4, 2018 and continue for 6-8 weeks depending on location. Learn more at stemcamp.ca
2 Website: stemcamp.ca