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"Gadget Camp" Takes In Girls, Turns Out Budding Engineers

| 20 Aug 2011 06:30
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A new summer camp is training young women to be engineers and skilled laborers via hands-on science.

Most of the time, summer camps for kids aren't the deepest of affairs. They're usually based around getting kids to spend time outdoors and socialize with others in their age groups. However, a summer camp near Chicago is doing something that's not only geeky but good for society: It's helping girls get interested in engineering and manufacturing.

"Gadget Camp" is a sixteen-girl camp that's run by Antigone Sharris, an "instructor in electronics, welding and computer-aided machinery at Triton College." The goal of the camp - which works with girls who are mostly from low-income families - is to help teach the girls how to become skilled laborers because there's still a high demand for such positions (even though the economy is still flatlining).

According to Sharris, a camp that teaches these skills is necessary because, "Not letting your children learn the hands-on component of the theory of science is killing us as a nation. You have to stop giving kids books and start giving them tools."

Sharris has apparently been pretty happy with the camp and its results: "There's no limit to what they can do. The only thing that does limit them is their thinking that they can't."

The fields of engineering and manufacturing are pretty light when it comes to women workers: It's estimated that only a quarter of the workforce are females. If Gadget Camp is able to help these young ladies get a leg up on future careers, then it sounds like a good cause to me.

Source: NY Times

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