Corning Life Sciences Helps Girl Scouts See STEM Futrure
Nearly 50 Girl Scouts learned about studying cells and growing seeds, and the role Corning Life Sciences products in the process by science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) professionals for those tasks and many others, during workshops held by Corning Life Sciences employees at the fifth annual STEM Conference and Expo in Framingham, Mass.
"The girls were excited and engaged, and asked smart questions," said a Corning employee who prepared the workshops and presented with help from two of his co-workers. "They learned that science can be for anybody who wants to take the time to learn. Corning hopes by getting involved in this conference, the next generation of engineers and scientists will remember we are an innovation company."
These employees presented two one-hour workshops to girls from sixth grade through high school. In the first half-hour, they showed the girls what a scientist does in a cell culture lab and how they use Corning Life Sciences labware like pipettes, pipettors, and flasks to feed and study cells under a microscope.
During the second half-hour, the girls placed seeds in two 50mL conical tubes produced by Corning and were encouraged to take them home and grow one set of seeds in the dark and one set in the light. They were instructed to measure the results and present their results on graph paper to their troop leaders.
"We wanted to give them an experiment they could take home. We asked them, at the end of one month, to report which seeds grew better,” said Corning employee who supported the workshop.
The Life Science workshops were sponsored by the Tewksbury chapter of the Corning Professional Women's Forum (CPWF) employee resource group, said chapter Chairperson and manager of Commercial Projects for Corning Life Sciences.
"We are a world leader in cell culture products and want to ensure that as many as possible in the next generation devote their careers to finding better treatments and cures for cancer, diabetes, and many other diseases that reduce the quality of life for so many people," she said. "We want the girls to know that scientists, technologists, engineers, and mathematicians make a significant difference in the world."
Corning was among more than 20 companies and universities meeting with hundreds of Girl Scouts at the one-day conference and expo, which was sponsored by the Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts.
One of the volunteers said the girls in the Corning Life Sciences workshops had great energy. "I could see the excitement on their faces when they tried something new and understood it," she said.
Another volunteer said, "It was overwhelming for me to watch as these girls learned that they have these great career opportunities today."