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WINSTEM group formed at Coe College

Rod Pritchard, Secretary of the College
(319) 399-8605 or rpritcha@coe.edu

2016-12-07 08:23:45 - General

To promote women in science, Coe students have joined together to form a new student organization called Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (WINSTEM) on the Coe College campus. Dahlia Baker, Hannah Koster, Sidniann Rummans, Tori Eng, Jane Been and Izzie Sorenson started the club as an interest group, under the mentorship of Coe Assistant Professor of Physics Firdevs Duru, who serves as the organization's faculty advisor.

Recently granted Coe College Student Senate approval to become an official Coe student organization, the members hosted their first official meeting on Dec. 5. Membership is open to all Coe students.

Promoting STEM education to students at younger ages is on the rise across the nation, as well as efforts to intentionally recruit more women in the field to promote equity in learning opportunities. Coe WINSTEM President Dahlia Baker is passionate about the goals of the STEM movement and the organization's role at Coe.

"We wish to see more diverse images of women in STEM roles in the media and entertainment, more discussion of the breadth of STEM careers and societal impacts, and to debunk the stigmas around gender involvement in the STEM fields," said Baker.

The mission of the organization states "…This club aims to create a space for students to gather and support each other, to advertise opportunities that could help STEM student's careers, and to provide mentorship and role models to young STEM students who often do far better in their studies when they have the guidance of older professionals who has been through the same struggles. This club is not exclusive, and in fact welcomes all genders to hear the issues, express their own, and to benefit from the community resources."

As a part of the organization's vision for participation within the Cedar Rapids community at large, club founders envision partnership with local elementary and high schools for mentorship of students who are interested in the STEM fields. The mentorship aspect of the club is patterned after www.millionwomenmentors.org, a non-profit that encourages the mentorship of women interested in a career path of STEM.

Currently, the club is establishing partnerships with area businesses to provide the necessary research and internship opportunities for Coe students.

Coe College offers superb academics and exciting co-curricular activities in a thriving urban setting that promotes student growth and success. Established in 1851, Coe has a national reputation for academic excellence enhanced by a student-centered, highly supportive campus environment. Coe's vibrant Cedar Rapids location provides an abundance of internships for students and career opportunities for graduates.