October 22, 2012

Louisiana Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) collaborative and Emmy award-winner, Design Squad Nation, partner to kick-off statewide initiative aimed at advancing STEM education and careers among girls

On Saturday, October 27, 2012, the Louisiana Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Girls Collaborative Project (LaSTEM GCP) is conducting a statewide Kick-Off Conference in partnership with PBS’ Emmy award-winner, Design Squad Nation (http://pbskids.org/designsquad/).  The LaSTEM GCP Kick-off Conference serves to officially launch the statewide LaSTEM GCP collaborative as well as bring together representatives from across Louisiana to discuss exemplary practices, develop new collaborations and share resources. 

The event is being held from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM at the LSU Engineering Annex Building, Frank Walk Presentation Room and is hosted by LSU College of Engineering Office for Diversity Programs.  Building is located on the corner of Nicholson Extension Drive & CEBA Lane, Louisiana State University campus, Baton Rouge, LA, 70803.

STEM professionals from throughout Louisiana are invited to attend this exciting one-day launch and conference featuring keynote and panel presentations by Louisiana STEM practitioners and a hands-on professional development training led by Design Squad Nation.  Participants will also receive an introduction to the LaSTEM GCP initiative and information about the collaborative mini grant program.  Eligibility for the first round of LaGCP STEM mini grants will be limited to organizations that participate in the October 27th Kick-Off Conference.  

The LaSTEM GCP Kick-off Conference is open to all individuals and organizations, including, but not limited to, afterschool providers, school administrators, engineers, technical professionals, business partners, members of professional organizations, K-12 educators, and university staff.

Conference fee is $25 and includes lunch.  Free parking is available.  Participants must register online. Please mail all checks to Attn: Lou Papai, Sci-Port: Louisiana's Science Center, 820 Clyde Fant Parkway, Shreveport, LA  71101.  Participants can also register and pay online at http://www.ngcproject.org/boosting-girls-interest-stem-louisiana-stem 

Out-of-town participants can take advantage of a special $99/night rate (includes breakfast) at The Cook Hotel on Louisiana State University’s campus.  Participants have until Friday, October 19, 2012 to reserve a hotel room.  Contact The Cook Hotel directly at (225) 383-2665.  Be sure to mention “Louisiana STEM Girls Collaborative Project” when placing the reservation.

A limited number of travel scholarships are available and will be distributed based on need.  For information contact Lou Papai at lpapai@sciport.org.

The Louisiana STEM Girls Collaborative Project is made possible by a grant from the National Girls Collaborative Project, a National Science Foundation funded project (HRD 0631789), in addition to contributions and collaboration from partners.  LaSTEM GCP is as one of 28 collaborative groups serving 38 states; working to encourage girls to pursue STEM careers and studies.  

Kick-off event parking details, maps and other information is available online at http://www.ngcproject.org/boosting-girls-interest-stem-louisiana-stem

For more information about the Louisiana STEM Girls Collaborative Project, go to: http://www.ngcproject.org/collaborative/louisiana-stem-girls-collaborative-project

The National Girls Collaborative Project provides a free online directory of STEM projects for girls.  To access this listing and include your organization’s STEM project, go to http://www.ngcproject.org/programs.

Please direct all media inquiries and general questions to Lou Papai at lpapai@sciport.org or (318) 424-8714. 

About LaSTEM Girls Collaborative Project

LaSTEM GCP is a group of individuals and organizations joined together to inspire girls’ interest in science, technology, engineering and math, as well as create opportunities for better coordination, networking and professional development among Louisiana’s STEM community. LaSTEM GCP serves as the Louisiana affiliate for the National Girls Collaborative Project network, providing access to funding, technical assistance and free or low-cost professional development opportunities for girl-serving organizations, educators, and business professionals. 

About National Girls Collaborative Project

The vision of the NGCP is to bring together organizations throughout the United States that are committed to informing and encouraging girls to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).  The National Girls Collaborative Project provides the opportunity for programs to increase their organizational capacity to maintain interest and participation of girls in STEM through collaboration. The project will also add knowledge to the out-of-school time field about effective engagement and outreach strategies for underrepresented girls in STEM. The NGCP model is structured to bring organizations together to compare needs and resources, share information, and to plan strategically to expand STEM-related opportunities for girls. The NGCP’s collaborative model transforms the way practitioners and educators work to advance girls participation in STEM.

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