As career choices continue to evolve for all genders, providing young girls and non-binary youth an opportunity to explore options for their futures remains vital. How would an 11- to 17-year-old know the options available if no one introduces them to the possibilities? That’s where Carnegie Science Center’s Tour Your Future program comes in.
The program introduces students to exciting careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). They meet female+ STEM professionals and learn what it’s like to work in a variety of industries, ranging from agricultural technology to environmental science, healthcare, vaccine research and more.
“The goal of the Tour Your Future program is to provide young people of marginalized genders with career knowledge and representation so that they can see themselves in these careers,” said Jason Brown, Henry Buhl, Jr., director of the Carnegie Science Center. “By touring real workplaces and meeting mentors they can relate to, students can visualize new possibilities for their futures.”
Visualization is everything, and this summer’s program aims to open the eyes of these girls and non-binary youth through tours at five sites scheduled between June and August. The June tour kicked off the program at the University of Pittsburgh Center for Vaccine Research. Four additional tours include:
Thursday, July 14: NeuBase Therapeutics – Students will learn about the process of designing, creating and testing new drugs while exploring NeuBase Therapeutics’ brand new facility. On the tour, students will meet female biologists, chemists and executives who will share insights on what it’s like to be a female scientist working on discovering cures to help millions of people.
Tuesday, July 19: University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering – Through interaction with current engineering ambassadors, participants will complete an activity investigating conductivity and coding with Makey-Makey technology—a fun-for-all educational STEM kit that brings engineering and coding concepts to life in exciting new ways. They’ll also learn about the different engineering courses available, providing a glimpse into the university’s first-year engineering program.
Wednesday, August 3: Rivers of Steel, The Explorer Riverboat – For this tour, participants will set sail on Pittsburgh’s rivers aboard the Explorer to learn about the microscopic organisms found in the city’s waters. Scientists and deckhands on board will also share insights about combining science with a boating career.
Friday, August 12: Robert Morris University Department of Engineering – Through a tour of Robert Morris University’s labs and the use of a hands-on biomedical engineering activity table, students will learn about this fast-growing field. For those interested in combining engineering with a medical career, this program demonstrates how this combination is used to develop devices and procedures to solve complex medical issues.
As one 16-year-old repeat participant noted, “The reason I keep attending Tour Your Future programs is because I believe that these programs are priceless opportunities. When I go on a Tour Your Future tour, I have the ability to meet with, to interact with, to ask questions of, and to learn from women professionals in different fields of STEM.”
Tour Your Future welcomes cisgender girls, transgender girls, non-binary youth, gender nonconforming youth, genderqueer youth and anyone who identifies as female.
The program is open to girls+ from ages 11 to 17 at a cost of $10 per person. A limited number of need-based scholarships for individuals and groups are available. Pre-registration is required at CarnegieScienceCenter.org.
Accessibility needs can be met by contacting Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh’s accessibility coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.