This was just sent out by NASA HQ. It might be of interest to this group!

NASA COMPLETES PILOT PROGRAM FOR ONE-ON-ONE VIRTUAL MENTORING OF MIDDLE SCHOOL GIRLS

WASHINGTON -- NASA's new virtual mentoring program is helping girls

get excited about careers in science and technology by working

one-on-one with agency professionals. Twenty-one girls in grades 5-8,

representing 12 states from New York to Hawaii, have completed a

pilot mentoring program called NASA Giving Initiative and Relevance

to Learning Science (NASA GIRLS).

NASA GIRLS is the first program to pair up girls with NASA female

mentors from the Women@NASA program using online video programs such

as Skype and Google Chat. Participants were selected from more than

1,600 applications.

"NASA GIRLS allows young students to work directly with women who

successfully have established STEM careers," said NASA Deputy

Administrator Lori Garver. "The program uses technology familiar to

the young generation and allows NASA to share its mission in regions

where there may not be a NASA center."

The mentoring sessions consisted of lessons in science, technology,

engineering and math (STEM). The last session focused on applying one

of the STEM subjects to two real-world events. The girls

mathematically calculated the shift of Earth's tilt caused by the

2011 Japan earthquake. They also computed the volume of SpaceX's

Dragon capsule, which in May became the first commercial spacecraft

to deliver supplies to the International Space Station.

The program included hands-on learning. During an engineering lesson,

the girls and their mentors were challenged to build a robot hand or

a Wright Brothers' model airplane while virtually connected.

NASA GIRLS aims to use commercially available technology to provide

convenient and meaningful mentoring in STEM subjects to inspire young

girls to learn how science and engineering can help them reach their

goal of making the world a better place. Recent data from the Girl

Scouts Research Institute shows that female mentors are important

when young girls decide to pursue advanced math and science courses.

Many of the NASA GIRLS mentors offered their mentees guidance after

the program, potentially forming long-term relationships that could

help young women make decisions about college majors and career

choices.

NASA will evaluate the results from the pilot year of the program to

offer a larger group of girls access in the second round. To learn

more about the program, visit:

http://women.nasa.gov/nasagirls

Women@NASA is a continuing, joint effort by NASA and the White House

Council on Women and Girls to relate STEM fields to young females.

For more information on the project, visit:

http://women.nasa.gov

and

http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/eop/cwg

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cool!  I heard they were doing this, but I wasn't sure how it went, so it is good to hear that it was successful :)  (and sounds like fun!)

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