Pennsylvania Commission for Women Hosts National STEM Day Event

November 16, 2022

Today, the Pennsylvania Commission for Women hosted a National STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) Day Event at the Pennsylvania State Museum to highlight women in various STEM careers and encourage girls to consider a future in STEM. The commission received 15 video submissions from women across the commonwealth. Each video showcases the women describing the work they do, their educational journey and why they chose a career in STEM.

The Girl Scouts in the Heart of Pennsylvania partnered with the commission to bring girls to the Pennsylvania State Museum to participate in badge-worthy STEM-related activities provided by the Pennsylvania State Library and women who sent in videos. The videos have been uploaded to YouTube and the Pennsylvania Commission for Women’s website, so girls across the state can watch and learn about careers in STEM.

“Our commission is so excited to be hosting our second annual National STEM Day event. One of our priorities is to increase the number of women in STEM careers in Pennsylvania. This project allows girls and young women to explore STEM opportunities,” said Commission for Women Executive Director Moriah Hathaway. ​“We wanted to introduce girls at an early age to STEM opportunities, so they are more likely to enjoy STEM subjects and feel empowered to consider a career in STEM. We are hoping that the girls feel inspired by the videos that were sent in and can envision themselves enjoying similar jobs in their future.”

Governor​ Tom Wolf and First Lady ​Frances Wolf encouraged the girls to pursue their STEM interests, and commending the commission for their work.

“We need to take a strategic approach to ensure that today’s students and workers have the skills they need for tomorrow’s jobs,” said Gov. Wolf. “That’s why, in 2018, I launched the PAsmart initiative, which introduced STEM and computer science programs into hundreds of schools, and helped bridge the gap between the classroom and well-paying jobs by building a new apprenticeship program.

“But that’s only the first step. As long as racial and gender gaps persist in STEM education and careers, Pennsylvania isn’t living up to its full potential. I am thankful to the Commission for Women for helping girls all across Pennsylvania learn about STEM opportunities, connect to mentors and envision STEM careers for themselves.”

“Women in STEM careers continue to move the commonwealth forward, keeping our industries competitive and Pennsylvania a great place to work and live,” said First Lady Wolf. “We know that science, technology, engineering and mathematics are the future, and it is imperative that we keep preparing our young women for these jobs. I commend the Commission for Women for their commitment to promoting the ideas and innovation of Pennsylvania’s women and ensuring our girls know they have a place in these fields.” 

Sarah Greene, director of the State Library, said “​The State Library of Pennsylvania is a proud supporter of STEM education and the Pennsylvania Commission for Women. The State Library engages with community partners and Pennsylvania libraries to encourage the incorporation of STEM into diverse library programs. During the National STEM Day event, State Library staff will be guiding Girl Scouts in creating rollercoasters and building robots, fostering a love of science and learning.”

“According to a new research report by Brookings Institute, Pennsylvania lags behind other states in the innovation economy. One of the four key items holding our state back is STEM education, from K-12 through higher education, remains significantly unequal by race and gender in Pennsylvania. Inspiring girls to pursue careers in STEM is an economic imperative for our state’s future,” said Commissioner and Chief Marketing Officer of Chariot Solutions, Tracey Welson-Rossman.

“We are very excited to be a part of National STEM Day for the second year in a row and the activities being held at the State Museum on Nov. 16,” said Janet Donovan, president and CEO of Girl Scouts in the Heart of Pennsylvania. “As one of the four pillars in Girl Scouting, STEM programs – girl-focused STEM programs — lead to critical thinkers, better grades and the foundation for a successful future. We are so proud to be part of that experience.”

Video submissions were received from the women listed below:

  • Lesli Kunkle, Wolfgang Confectioners, Director of Food Safety and Quality
  • Tonya Nye, Wolfgang Confectioners, Vice President of Customer Care
  • Michelle Finch, Wolfgang Confectioners, Senior Director of Work Force Development
  • Danielle Klein, The ButterBee Foundation, Founder/ Executive Director
  • Arianna Sindelar, Lancaster County Dept. of Parks and Recreation, Park Naturalist
  • Hannah Smith-Brubaker, Pasa Sustainable Agriculture, Executive Director
  • Katrin Hillner, PCN (PC Network Inc.), President & CEO
  • Jen Fetter, Penn State Extension, Water Resources
  • Joyce Sakamoto, Penn State University, Assistant Research Professor
  • Becca Refford, Chariot Solutions, Design and Marketing
  • Margarita Uribe-Lopez, Penn State University, Professor
  • Johnna Goble, Shippensburg University, Mathematics Professor
  • Jodi Gauker, Chester County Economic Development Council, Agriculture Project Director
  • Crystal Daughtry, Delta Airlines, Mechanic
  • Wendy Jackson-Dowe, Sky Pix Group, President, Engineer, FAA Certified Drone Pilot
  • Tracy Langkilde, Penn State Eberly College of Science, Verne M. Willaman Dean
  • Kishi Qiang, Kulicke and Soffa Industries, Inc., Engineer    
SHARE Email Facebook Twitter