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American Association of University Women sends five eighth-grade girls to Tech Trek

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Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 3:19 pm

The Lodi Branch of the American Association of University Women sent five 8th grade girls to Tech Trek at California State University, Fresno for the one-week summer math and science camp. The girls were selected after being recommended by their teachers, completing an application, and being interviewed by an AAUW committee.

The 2013 Tech Trekkers are Jasmine Bhangu, Bryanna Bernal, Amanda Chan, Cathlyn Pham, Madison Wiles. In addition, former Lodi Tech Trekker, Kelsey Morgan Churchill, was chosen as a counselor at Fresno State Tech Trek.

While at Tech Trek, the girls live in the dorms, attend classes and activities at CSU Fresno, and meet other women and girls who love math and science. The highlights of the week include a trip to the space capsule and lunch with female scientists.

The Tech Trekkers will return to Lodi and share their experiences at the August AAUW Kick Off Luncheon. AAUW will offer mentoring to these young ladies as they go through high school. We hope they apply for our scholarships at the end of their senior years.

In the 1990’s, AAUW completed a nationwide study that sought reasons girls were not pursuing science or math in college and were therefore shut out of top careers. The study showed the most prominent reason for the attrition of girls in the math/science fields was the girls’ beliefs they were unfeminine if they competed successfully with boys in these fields. AAUW developed Tech Trek to remedy this mistaken belief. Many Tech Trek activities give girls exposure to role models and careers in math and science. First held at Stanford University,12 California college campuses now house Tech Trek. The Tech Trek application process mimics the scholarship and college application process in order to give girls practice in skills they will use throughout their lives.

Seventh grade girls who are interested in applying for Tech Trek should see their counselors. People who want to help sponsor Tech Trek should contact Melinda Vargo at 209-369-7196. Thank you to everyone who participated in our Bunco Party and Garage Sale which pay for Lodi Branch’s Tech Trek Scholarships.

— Source: Suga Moriwaki

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