STEM Trek – is a program for young women with an emphasis on the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) areas.

In addition to the annual California Tech Trek camp for young women, Atascadero AAUW decided that the one shot approach was not sufficient to maintain the interest in the STEM subjects. We began the STEM Trek program to extend the girls’ opportunities to participate in STEM involvement. We have invited not only the girls who have attended the summer camp but also the girls who applied to go but were not chosen.

Year one the STEM Trek participants got to tour the High School Robotics lab and see the robot that won first place in the international competition. Liz Helgerson helped us to bring a young woman to share her college experiences with the girls. She had just graduated from college majoring in engineering. In September 2011 we had a field trip to the Santa Barbara office of the State Dept. of Justice forensic labs. A State Archeologist — a woman of course — spoke to the group later in the year. We had another field trip in April to the Avila Sea Center.

Mimi Ribier – mother of one of our past Tech Trekkers is committee chair for this important program.