Saturday, November 22, 2014

GoldieBlox Changing Stereotypes

This morning as I was scrolling down my Facebook feed in bed, I found out that Goldie Blox has a story with group of friends that is really interesting. Naturally, I went to the website and had to check it out! The website is adorable- as seen above in a screen shot. My main focus was on her friends and who they have involved in this world of engineering for children. One of friends is a black female who is the best coder in the school and she loves fashion. I basically am obssessed with her because she's kinda like me and she's a great influence for my little cousins who I want to become engineers in the future. Normally, I do not post too much on the state of minorities in engineering because it is a very complex topic and I only have a undergraduate point of view on the topic. It is something very important to me because I am actually on a council at Penn State within the College of Engineering with all the upper leadership of the engineering college's diversity organizations to help increase the diversity within this college. This is something that as a board, we agree is something amazing to be happening in engineering right now!

It is very hard to find references to engineers in the media but Goldie Blox and this character are making a very positive impression on the youth of today. This is the kind of inspiration I wish I had when I was young and I am so happy to be seeing it now. The statistics on black female engineers in America are staggering. I can tell you maybe 10% of the black engineers that have a degree are female. That is a very small number - 10% of the 4% of engineers in the United States are black and female. Goldie Blox makes it possible for us to interest, possibly recruit and then retain these young black women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Technology). The interest in STEM has to start early and be feed into for as long as possible if we want more black and female engineers or more engineers period! If you see this float on the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade, make sure to point it out to the young ones in your family. Goldie Blox is doing big things and you should really take a look at their toys to see if this something a niece or a young cousin could be interested in and maybe become an engineer one day :]

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