NDSU Expanding Your Horizons Conference Explores STEM Opportunities for Over 300 Girls
Posted on Apr, 15 2014
This year was the 35th Annual Expanding Your Horizons (EYH) program in the Fargo Moorhead area. The conference was held at North Dakota State University on April 12th with 47 workshops at various locations throughout the Fargo-Moorhead area. Over 300 girls in grades 7-9 explored STEM career fields and experienced hands-on activities that included working with animals, building robotics with legos, exploring astronomy, creating a rocket, and more. The sessions were led by mentors who are experienced in STEM related fields with the goal to motivate young girls to become innovative and creative thinkers ready to meet 21st century challenges. In the 34 years Expanding Your Horizons has been brought to the Fargo community, it has impacted over 23,781 youth. NDSU Distance and Continuing Education coordinates the conference annually as a regional effort with collaboration from numerous community partners.
Jessica Soucy attended Expanding Your Horizons for three years while in grades 7-9, and has now volunteered for the past 3 conferences. She remembered attending with her friend Shelby, now an NDSU student, and her sister Michelle. Shelby is currently exploring career opportunities as a lawyer and Michelle is going to school to become a dental assistant and hygienist. Jessica, an Administrative Assistant at Rasmussen College, shared her experiences:
Personally, I always looked forward to the conference. It was always exciting signing up for various workshops. I still have my packet of information from each time. I just enjoy holding onto those memories.
As I move forward in my own career in higher education, I am inspired to continue the work that others have done for my generation. I believe this is a fantastic opportunity for young minds to gather and just see what types of opportunities the world holds. It exposes students to a vast world of careers that you might not see every day (or even think about). If anything, it is a chance to simply learn something new.
Personally, I hope to continue to work with this conference. It has a special place in my heart as I was once a participant. I was once on the other side of this event and I believe that is a special connection. I would love to continue to see the impact this conference has.
Currently, Expanding Your Horizons conferences for girls are held in 31 states and in Europe and Asia. The EYH Network began in 1974 as the Math/Science Network, an informal group of women scientists and educators in the San Francisco Bay Area who were concerned about low female participation in math courses. On a volunteer basis, members of the group began planning coordinated efforts to strengthen their individual programs and to offer mutual support.