Expanding Your Horizons in Science & Mathematics is held each Spring at the University of Central Florida. It nurtures the interest of middle school girls in careers in science, technology, engineering & math. Miss Florida USA & Mrs. Florida, both with careers & degrees in electrical engineering were guest speakers. Feature length – 13:19
The University of Central Florida’s College of Engineering and Computer Science presented the Expanding Your Horizons Conference on February 20, 2010. The Conference is an annual event held at the Harris Engineering building. Approximately 180 girls, grades 6-8, participated in the conference.
The UCF Expanding Your Horizons Program is aimed at introducing Central Florida girls to exciting careers in Science, Math and Engineering fields. These fields have traditionally been considered the province of men but more and more female students have been opting for the demanding math, science and engineering course that lead to challenging careers.
The girls attending the conference participate in two workshops, demonstrations by the Center for Research and Education in Optics and Lasers and attend The Upside-Down Science show presented by WonderWorks. Conference fees also included lunch and a t-shirt.
The special guests in 2010 were Megan Clementi, Miss Florida USA 2010 and Janet McCulloh, Mrs. Florida America 2009. Both these beauty pageant winners are graduates in electrical engineering from UCF with successful careers in the field.
While the girls are in workshops, parents are invited to stay and learn, too. They attend simultaneous workshops that tell them why their daughters should choose to study math, science, and engineering and how they can help prepare them.
Diane Johnson and Leslie Castner are the directors of the conference which was supervised by Dr. Charles Riley of the UCF college of engineering and computer science.
Support for the conference is provided by Harris Corporation and SAIC company, women engineers in our community and UCF students from CREOL — The Center for Research and Education in Optics and Lasers.
Expanding Your Horizons is part of a national network of conferences held in 31 states and in Europe and Asia.
The EYH Network, (formerly the Math/Science Network) started in 1974 as an informal group of women scientists and educators in the San Francisco Bay Area who were concerned about low female participation in math courses. They began planning coordinated efforts to strengthen their individual programs and establish mutual support on a volunteer basis.
The Network is a non-profit membership organization of educators, scientists, mathematicians, parents, community leaders, and government and corporate representatives.
Their ultimate goal is to motivate girls to become innovative and creative thinkers ready to meet 21st Century challenges.
Extended Interview & Pictures
Megan Clementi, Miss Florida USA 2010
and Desta Horner
Extended interview (04:39)