The Colorado Petroleum Council, a division of the American Petroleum Institute, hosted more than 170 sixth through eleventh grade young women in a half day of hands on, interactive science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) activities. The event explored the benefits of STEM through practical energy exploration exercises and examined the range of related career opportunities.
“Our ‘Women in Power’ initiative continues to highlight the many opportunities for women to prepare, join and thrive in the energy industry,” said Tracee Bentley, Executive Director of the Colorado Petroleum Council. “Today’s event is encouraging young women to have an interest in future STEM careers, such as oil and gas development.”
‘Girl Power Starts with STEM’ is the third event of the Colorado Petroleum Council’s ‘Women in Power’ initiative, a proposal designed to draw more women to one of Colorado’s most dynamic and vital industries. One goal of this initiative is for women and minorities to learn about existing pathways to success in the oil and gas industry.
“These events bring together successful, hard working women from the community with young women to help spread a passion for science, technology, engineering, and math,” said Bentley. “We want Coloradoans to come away with a better understanding of the careers that exist in an industry that works hard to bring Americans the energy they need, now and in the future.”
Democratic strategist Celinda Lake and Republican strategist Linda DiVall found that women seeking employment have bypassed the industry because of a systemic lack of knowledge about available job opportunities. Their findings were released in a recent study commissioned by the American Petroleum Institute, ‘Attitudes and Perceptions of Women about Seeking Employment in the Oil & Natural Gas Industry.’ The ‘Women in Power’ initiative, spearheaded by Bentley, was created to change that paradigm.
In addition to ‘Girl Power Starts with STEM’, the ‘Women in Power’ initiative also sponsored Denver events on 3 June for female thought leaders in Colorado, as well as an event on 18 June for women just beginning their careers.
Partnering organisations that helped make this event possible include: ACE Scholarships, Alliance of Choice in Education, Alpha Kappa Alpha, American Association of Blacks in Energy, Camp Experience, College Summit, College Trek, Colorado Association of Career and Technical Administrators, Colorado Association of Career and Technical Education, Colorado Black Roundtable, Colorado Black Women for Political Action, Colorado League of Charter Schools, Colorado School Counselor Association, Colorado Succeeds, Colorado Women’s Chamber of Commerce, Colorado Workforce Development Council, Delta Sigma Theta, Douglas County Energy Alliance, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Denver, Escuela Tlateloco, Kappa Alpha Psi, McKenna Long Aldridge Women’s Initiative, Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors of Colorado, Rocky Mountain Energy Forum, Rocky Mountain Pipe Trades District 5, StemsCo, TRIO Educational Opportunity Center, Xcel Energy, and Urban League of Denver.
Adapted from press release by Rosalie Starling