Rosie Riveters' goal is to close the gender gap in STEM. In 2019 women made up only 27% of the science and engineering workforce in the U.S. Our programs work toward achieving gender equity in the field by starting early (they begin in preschool and extend through middle school), engaging repeatedly, and building confidence via productive struggle.
So how does this work? To put it simply, our projects are designed so that participants get it wrong before they get it right. Rather than being presented with a list of instructions, our participants are given examples of projects to examine and work from and a table full of materials. There are no directions. Participants will inevitably (and intentionally) fail as they attempt to create their own STEM projects.
This is an incredibly powerful experience, and it forms the core of our programs. It’s about STEM of course - the perseverance it takes to succeed as a woman in a male-dominated field, the comfortability with failure that is required of engineers and scientists, etc. - but it’s also about the confidence you gain when you just jump in and try, when you get it wrong before you get it right, when you’re not afraid to ask questions, or be the only girl in the room. Overall, Rosie Riveters equips young women with the confidence to try - in STEM and beyond.