ExxonMobil is encouraging girls to consider science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers through the 12th-annual Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day program to be held at 14 ExxonMobil and XTO Energy sites nationwide over the next several months.
Building on the success of ExxonMobil’s recent ‘Be An Engineer’ efforts, more than 2000 middle-school girls across the country will take part. Participants will have the opportunity to work with ExxonMobil employees who will serve as mentors, providing students with role models and helping to sharpen their STEM skills. The programs will include a wide range of hands-on activities, such as demonstrating the energy industry’s use of 3D technology to search for oil and natural gas; water purification experiments; and exploring the science of manufacturing cosmetics.
In addition to Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day, ExxonMobil is spearheading a social media effort to promote ‘Be An Engineer’ as part of its Engineers Week activities. Various universities and associations will join the social conversation (#BeAnEngineer) to shine a light on the contributions of engineers to making the world a better place.
“Providing access to female professionals in STEM careers inspires girls to consider pursuing the field,” said Suzanne McCarron, general manager of public and government affairs, ExxonMobil. “Through our ‘Be An Engineer’ and Engineers Week efforts, ExxonMobil hopes to engage students early in their education and expose them to the exciting and rewarding aspects of a career that drives innovation.”
Launched in 2014, ‘Be An Engineer’ highlights real-life engineers behind some of the world’s greatest technical achievements and provides resources to encourage students to choose engineering careers. The BeAnEngineer.com web site includes detailed first-person accounts of engineers who are researching, exploring and taking on many of the world’s toughest challenges. Since its launch, the effort has generated more than 19 million online engagements; the campaign won the 2014 Ragan PR Daily CSR award for cause marketing. Additionally, a series of blog posts featuring ExxonMobil engineers speaking about the profession will be featured on Huffington Post.
Attracting more young people, and particularly girls, to math and science studies, and ultimately STEM careers, is critical to ensuring the growing technological needs of the United States can be met. According to the 2013 Economic and Statistics Administration Report, women comprise half of the U.S. workforce, but hold less than 25% of STEM jobs and only 14% of engineering positions.
Since ExxonMobil began its “Introduce a Girl to Engineering” program more than a decade ago, more than 11 000 students have participated in activities conducted at company facilities or classroom demonstrations.
Adapted from press release by Joe Green