Mississippi Power hosts iCan! Girls STEM Camp

In it’s third year, the camp designed to shed light on the multiple career opportunities available girls that have an appreciation for math and science

Mississippi Power hosts iCan! Girls STEM Camp
Girls got the chance to learn more about STEM at Mississippi Power's iCan! Girls STEM camp. (Source: Photo WLOX)

PASS CHRISTIAN, Miss. (WLOX) - Mississippi Power is helping to make the future brighter for school aged girls interested in engineering.

Today, our iCan! Girls in Engineering team is exposing STEM-related careers to young ladies attending summer camp in Pass Christian! We are working in teams to do chemical experiments such as, boo bubbles, elephant toothpaste, slime and bath bombs. These young ladies will also do a civil/industrial experiment where they will design and build a high-heel shoe. Teaching these students about safety and hands-on experiments will help plant a seed in an engineering career path and continue building a solid foundation in their education. 💡⚗️📚

Posted by Mississippi Power on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

While women make up half of the overall workforce, according to the Southern Company, they only make up 21 percent of all STEM jobs. Additionally, only 11 percent of working engineers are women. Mississippi Power is out to change that.

Introduced by Alabama Power, the camp was founded to empower and inspire young female minds to explore the field of engineering.

Mississippi Power hosts iCan! Girls STEM Camp
Mississippi Power hosts iCan! Girls STEM Camp (Source: Photo WLOX)

Today, Gulf Coast girls are led by female Mississippi Power engineers and co-op students through four workstations. They learned basic concepts from mechanical, electrical, industrial, civil, chemical and computer engineering.

Through a host of hands-on interactions they designed a high-heeled shoe, created lip balm and bath bombs and also created and edited their own digitally-animated movie. These skills are important for an array of reasons, according to Yaneira Lara, a distribution engineer with Mississippi Power, and an instructor in today’s camp.

Yaneira Lara is one of the Mississippi Power engineers helping to develop the young minds.
Yaneira Lara is one of the Mississippi Power engineers helping to develop the young minds. (Source: Photo WLOX)

“It’s important to expose young females that STEM careers are out there for them and the opportunities that are there if they choose to go that path," Lara said. "So, this is just a way to kind of spark an interest in them so that they go back to school and ask questions and maybe even shadow an engineer just to kind of build that foundation if this is what they want to do.”

This is one of the highlight’s of Lara’s summer. “I like seeing their reactions to the experiments and talking to them about what I do,” she said. “A lot of the experiments, they can do at home... like the slime. What’s I think is most well-received are the fundamentals and the safety behind the things that we are teaching."

Mississippi Power hosts iCan! Girls STEM Camp
Mississippi Power hosts iCan! Girls STEM Camp (Source: Photo WLOX)

The girls in this year’s summer camp, the third hosted by Mississippi Power, were excited to get their hands dirty. “I’ve done this camp last year and the year before because I like doing science and engineering,” said Aria Grady, a STEM camp student.

This is aria Grady's third time at the camp.
This is aria Grady's third time at the camp. (Source: Photo WLOX)

“My favorite is the elephant toothpaste,” Grady said. “We make that with iodine solution, which is iodine and water, Dawn dish soap and hydrogen peroxide,” said Grady. “It explodes!”

To learn more about other educational programs offered by Mississippi Power, visit the company’s website HERE.

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