STEM Gals Initiative Inspires More Women to Pursue STEM Related Fields

Front Row: Ryan Highnote, Danna Taylor (mentor), Austin Taylor; Back Row: Lauren Knoff, Vaughn Knoff, Josh Sadler, Hannah Cowgill, Christian Garcia, Cathy Knoff (mentor)

(ROCKWALL, TX – Feb. 17, 2109) The Rockwall High School Robotics Team, Full Metal Jackets, hosted a new offseason event last October in Allen, TX – STEM Gals. The event emphasized that STEM is for Gals as much as GUYS. This gave female team members a chance for leadership roles in all aspects of the competition – from MCing, refereeing, judging, driving and building the robot and learning about all the aspects of FIRST.

Team 1296 proposed that the first Saturday in October be declared STEM Gals day in Rockwall. The City of Rockwall agreed and on February 4, 2019 Mayor Jim Pruitt declared October 5, 2019 STEM Gals Day, in honor of our event. Declaring STEM Gals day will bring more awareness for the need of women in STEM and FIRST robotics. In 2018, we informed our U.S. Representative John Ratcliffe, and our Texas State Representative Justin Holland on our new female initiative, STEM Gals. Representative Ratcliffe informed our unit while at FIRST National Advocacy Conference in Washington D.C. that the U.S. is predicted to be one million STEM workers short by 2022 and women only make up ¼ of the workforce.

Click link for video of proclamation, by Blue Ribbon News

STEM Gals is our team’s initiative to increase the percentage and inspire more women to pursue STEM related fields. In 2019, our unit will be hosting STEM Gals at our base in Rockwall, TX. Our unit spread the word of this event throughout Texas and neighboring states to attract more participation. We seek to encourage more women to consider STEM pathways by promoting many of the exciting opportunities that STEM has to offer.

If you or someone you know would like more information on attending or sponsoring the event please contact us on our social media accounts: Facebook – Rockwall High School Robotics, Twitter – @FRCTeam1296, Instagram – @frc1296,  or our website

Submitted Press Release by Hannah Cowgill, EVP Public Relations

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