By Jenny Oh.
STEAM education can provide us with expanded career opportunities. As Protégés are contemplating what to major in college and what kind of career to pursue, does a future in STEAM mean we have to trade in our passions for a career? The Passion for STEM/STEAM session explores our personal interests and how combined with STEAM talents, our passions can elevate to greater heights.
Networking Session – What is your PASSION?
WHAT IS YOUR PASSION? Many Protégés raised their hands and shared their personal interests and dreams. We learned that collectively, we
- like to play basketball, soccer, and other sports
- love listening to and even playing music. We have a Taiko drum player in the group!
- love to travel
- want to help women, the youth, and even animals
- There was even someone who said their passion was to check things off their To-Do list, like their homework.
GIT Session – Passion for STEAM
GIT Virginia Mentor-Protégé Program Chair, Jenny Oh, pointed out that during the networking activity, not a single person mentioned a passion related to STEAM. How interesting that we are inspired by, motivated by, and passionate about so many things, but we did not mention passion for science, technology, engineering, art design, or math. We are here in the GIT program because we want to study STEAM, after all, we all know that there are many job opportunities in the STEAM field. But why are you pursuing an academic and career path in STEAM if there is no passion? Do we have to give up our passions when we start working? Does having a career in STEAM mean we have to trade in our interests to become a well-paid STEAM worker bee? What happens to playing drums, basketball, helping animals and the rest of our passions?
Many Protégés are conflicted by what their parents want them to study in college, what they should study to make a lot of money in the future, versus what they truly are interested in. Jenny explained that there is such a thing as having a dream job that combines both our STEAM skills and our passions? She provided examples of how to combine our passion with STEAM.
For example, Grace Choi created her own make-up company called Mink. Mink is make-up you can print at home without buying it from a store. She took a conventional desktop printer and converted it so that it could print make-up.
Many of us have or have had pets, and we love them. What happens to pets when they are injured and/or it becomes difficult for owners to take care of severely injured pets? During the session, we looked at careers at how to make prosthetics for our pets!
Whatever path you decide to take, the takeaway is that having a strong background in STEAM is not just about job security, but that STEAM skills are required for jobs of the future – even in our dream jobs.
GIT Demo – GIT CyberGirls Panel
- Information about the National CyberPatriot Program
- The benefit and demand for cyber security skills
- How to join a CyberPatriot Team
- Taught us how to calculate binary, octal, and hexadecimal
- How computer skills have helped the girls in their academic and personal pursuits
- Encouraged the Protégés to learn computer and technical skills
Mentoring Session – My Passion + STEAM
After the Passion for STEAM sessions, Proteges and Mentors were asked what they would do to combine their passions with STEAM. The Proteges shared their Passion + STEAM ideas. Some responses were:
- Combine technology into music therapy
- Create prosthetics for injured animals
- Design robots to perform medical procedures
- Create more games for girls
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