A worthy endeavor

Published 10:49 am Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Women have historically been underrepresented in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), one of the many reasons the recent three-week STEM camp for local middle school girls was so important. Paul D. Camp Community College was one of only five community colleges in the United States tabbed by the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship to host such a project, and by all accounts the college staff developed and executed a stellar program.

Sponsored by Verizon, which provided much of the technology the girls had access to during the camp, the program provided young female students the opportunity to experience first hand many of the exciting options that a STEM career can afford.

However, it wasn’t an important program just because it catered to female students.

Opportunities such as this also show technology leaders across the region that Western Tidewater is producing brilliant young minds capable of one day staffing the high-tech ventures that are a major driver of our global economy. Successful STEM program such as this, as well as the ongoing success of the robotics program at Franklin High School, give community leaders the ability to market Western Tidewater as a viable place to start, expand or relocate STEM related industries.

We are proud that PDCCC was selected to host such a program, grateful to Verizon for providing the resources necessary to make it successful, and inspired by the young ladies who represented their hometown so well. We hope to see PDCCC, as well as our local school systems, capitalize on this unique opportunity and continue to place significant emphasis on STEM education for their students.