AAUW sends nine Tech Trekkers to camp

AAUW sends nine Tech Trekkers to campEach year, the members of the China Lake-Ridgecrest Branch of the American Association of University Women support the Tech Trek Campership Program, which gives girls leaving the seventh grade an opportunity to attend a week-long science, math, engineering and technology camp at a university campus during the summer.

This year the organization has funded nine girls who will attend camps at Fresno State University, the University of California at Santa Barbara and the University of California at San Diego.

The girls and their parents were invited to attend a luncheon, at which the members of AAUW can meet their honorees. This year’s luncheon was held May 4.

Girls who attended with their parents were Angela Kerlin and Emma Gilmartin, who will go to Fresno State University; Sydney Marler and Sarah Bartels, who will go to UCSB (with Mackenzie Brannon, who was unable to attend) and Korina Kelly, Haley Savage, Dezerea Edulag and Sophia Speredelozzi, who will attend the camp at UCSD.

Girls were presented with bags of notions for the trip as well as “Tech Trek Bears.”

At the weeklong camp the girls will be exposed to many hands-on activities, presentations from women in the STEM fields and field trips to explore the various habitats near their university grounds.

Girls are selected by nominations from the science and math teachers at the three public middle schools in Ridgecrest.

After reviewing the nominations, the Tech Trek Committee sends word to the girls, requests a short essay about a related topic, and permission from the girls’ parents to be able to attend.

When all the requests are received, the girls participate in short interviews by several AAUW members. Those selected are then sent affirmations by the Tech Trek coordinator.

The local AAUW Bbranch has supported this program, with the help of many donations from individuals and corporations, since 1998, when the program began with only one university in use, Stanford, and about 70 girls attending.

China Lake-Ridgecrest Branch sent one girl to the first program. There are now 10 camps in California, with each camp population of approximately 90 girls. The program, developed and expanded in California, has been adopted in the last two years by several other state AAUW organizations.

Story First Published: 2013-05-15