In a contest designed to bring young engineers and technicians into the aerospace industry, TARC (Team America Rocketry Challenge) brought the top 100 teams into the Washington DC area to fly their rockets.
Out of the 100 teams, 9 were all girl teams. Many teams had female members. This kind of competition encourages young people to enter STEM fields, dream big, and fly high – literally.
Isabella Leighton, Dalia Castillo and Ruth Long from San Antonio, Texas were Team Eclipse. Image courtesy Team America Rocketry Challenge
Team Eclipse took second place in 2012 and were back again in 2013. TARC press described the team:
Roosevelt High School’s Engineering Technology Academy in San Antonio, Texas. These girls come from highly diverse backgrounds, with the team captain’s family immigrating to the United States from Mexico. After last year’s competition, the girls were tasked with developing a research project for NASA’s Student Launch Initiative, and have worked to balance the priorities TARC and NASA while also navigating their day-to-day realities of school and family. Team Eclipse was featured at the White House Science Fair where they had the opportunity to show off their rocketry skills to President Obama.
Another all girl team came from the Cambridge, Mass., Science Club for Girls. There are 7 members in the club, although only four are pictured below.
Image courtesy Team America Rocketry Challenge
The Cambridge Science Club team calls itself the Teckorettes. Members pictured in the photo are Jameelah Julien, Alyssa Wang, Dina Benayad-Cherif, Tatevick De La Rosa. They made a video about their team in order to gain support for their trip to Washington DC.
The top 100 teams were selected from over 700 teams. The 2013 winners were from a 4-H club in Georgetown, Texas. Various aerospace industry companies offered scholarships and other incentives to the students who entered. Students also competed for a chance to be part of NASA's Student Launch Projects.
Here's a video from the 2011 competition. It's a couple of years old, but it gives you a great glimpse into the competition and the kinds of kids who show an interest in STEM oriented programs.
Any program that encourages young women to enter STEM fields is a hit with me. Way to fly, rocketeers!
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