October 31, 2023
Software.org x Raytheon x GWC Partner for Inaugural Industry Immersion Day at the National Air & Space Museum
July 25, 2023
In a landmark partnership, Software.org, Raytheon (RTX), and Girls Who Code came together to orchestrate the inaugural Industry Immersion Day at the Smithsonian’s National Air & Space Museum in Washington, DC. This distinguished event marked the grand conclusion of Software.org’s ninth annual two-week Summer Immersion Program (SIP) with Girls Who Code, involving students from 10th, 11th, and 12th grades.
The day commenced with an informative and captivating Planetarium show led by Shauna Edson, engaging the attendees in a profound exploration of the cosmos. This academically stimulating start provided a foundation for the subsequent proceedings.
The day was rich with engaging activities, including Lunch & Learn sessions, Mentoring Huddles, and Museum Exploration, all designed to foster connections and insights into the world of technology. As one participant expressed, “[I enjoyed] being able to learn more about tech and how it’s changed our knowledge of the world and connecting with other people of the same interest.”
Software.org volunteers, including, BSA’s Senior Counsel, Beverly Chang; Senior Manager of Digital, Stefania Durden; Communications Specialist, Lindsay Emery; Associate General Counsel and Senior Director, Jesse Martin; and Manager of Strategic Initiatives, Lilia Stone; provided career guidance and personal anecdotes about their professional trajectories. A student expressed enthusiasm, stating, “I got to meet possible mentors and women in the tech industry that are working to help close the gender gap in the workforce.”
The afternoon continued with collective exploration of the museums, affording students and volunteers a tangible connection with technological advancements. The volunteers led the students throughout the exhibits at the museum, an opportunity that allowed students to connect with industry professionals and get perspectives and guidance.
The underlying objective resonated clearly: to broaden workforce diversity within STEM fields. With over 70% of participants from Historically Underrepresented Groups (HUGs), these young women represent a burgeoning talent pool ready to infuse new perspectives into the industry.
BSA’s Senior Director, Kate Goodloe, succinctly articulated the essence of the day: “Today, you’re not just coders or tech enthusiasts. You are creators, innovators, and change-makers… Continue to code, learn, and inspire.”
The event served not merely as an enjoyable day but as an influential experience, equipping these young women with the confidence and vision to recognize themselves as potential leaders in the technological field.
Manager, Strategic Initiatives
Lilia Stone is the Manager of Strategic Initiatives of Sofware.org: the BSA Foundation, where she supports the Foundation’s programs, operations, and outreach. Read more >>