CECERT hosted the GEMS (Girls in Engineering Math and Science) conference on October 3, 2019, for 35 9th and 10th grade girls from across the Inland Southern California region. Leading the conference was Professor Sunni Ivey and 3 female grad students, Sahar Ghadimi, Priya Sengupta, and Xinyue Kan from UCR CE-CERT. The day’s objectives were to inspire girls interested in a STEM related career to continue their path through interaction and experiences with other female engineers.
The GEMS girls rotated in three sessions, Biofuels, Air Quality, and Drones. In each session the girls were able to see demonstrations of each category and how they can change the world through scientific pursuits. The girls learned what bio mass is and how it can be used to create fuels. They learned how to operate air quality monitors and interpret data from local stations all around our community, and learned how to access a live data feed of all of Riverside County. During the drone session, the girls learned fundamentals of the electronics and programming of a drone, and how things can go wrong if not programed correctly. The girls then were able to test their drone skills by trying to fly a drone in a hover movement. To wrap up the morning, after team building visioning and leadership activities, the engineers and GEMS girls chatted about experiences as a woman in a male dominated field and techniques for overcoming shared challenges.