Media Advisory: Students launch engineering camp to promote STEM to high school girls

From left, Dana Voll, Katie Czerniejewski and Julie Fetzer, engineering majors at UB, launched Tinker, an engineering camp for high school girls. Credit: Nancy J. Parisi.

Release Date: August 12, 2015 This content is archived.

The idea behind Tinker... is to introduce high school girls to STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields, in which women are underrepresented.

BUFFALO, N.Y. – Engineering doesn’t benefit humanity. There are no women in engineering.

These common misconceptions and more are what propelled three University at Buffalo undergraduate students – Katie Czerniejewski, Julie Fetzer and Dana Voll – to launch UB’s first engineering summer camp for high school girls.

The camp, called Tinker, is happening this week at UB. It includes faculty presentations, hands-on learning activities and tours of local industry such as Praxair, Greatbatch and Moog Inc.

The idea behind Tinker, according to Czerniejewski, Fetzer and Voll, is to provide an opportunity for high school girls to explore STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields, in which women are underrepresented.

Best photo opportunities: 3-5 p.m. on Wednesday, 1:30-4 p.m. on Thursday and 9 a.m. to noon on Friday. Click here for a detailed schedule.

Where: Davis Hall (building No. 37 on this map) on UB’s North Campus.

Background: The seed for Tinker was planted in late 2013, when Czerniejewski, Fetzer and Voll met with Liesl Folks, dean of UB’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, to discuss stereotypes that prevent women from studying STEM fields.

The students solidified their ideas in a report called “Perception of University Recruitment Strategies by Females Students in STEM” that ultimately won “Best Paper” at the 2014 Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers Integrated STEM Education Conference at Princeton University.

The camp, Fetzer said, is a way to turn those ideas in action.

Cory Nealon
Director of Media Relations
Engineering, Computer Science
Tel: 716-645-4614