Encouragement for Girls in STEM from an Unexpected Source

Engineer. Computer scientist. Cosmetics developer? Here's a look at how one makeup company is helping promote STEM careers among girls.

When you think about jobs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), things like computer scientist, aerospace engineer, and software developer are probably among the first things that come to mind. But STEM skills are also required for exciting and off-the-beaten-path careers like sports statistician, professional hacker, and underwater archaeologist. You could even work on an applied research team and create new formulas for cosmetics.

That last one is (at least partly) the reason why cosmetics and beauty company L’Oréal USA launched www.forgirlsinscience.org, a website designed to be “a fun place where science doesn’t intimidate, but inspires and empowers girls of all ages to pursue their career goals in  STEM.”


The website's mission is as follows:

“At L’Oréal, we don’t just depend on science, we believe in science. It’s science that can turn the impossible into the possible, turn a dream into a reality, and in turn, reinvent our future. But none of this is conceivable without the curiosity and creativity of those behind the science: scientists themselves. They are the ones who dream and inspire. So why is there a shortage of women that pursue the field? That is why we at L’Oréal have created a community for girls who love science and a place for them to dream big. That place is For Girls in Science.”

The lighthearted and highly interactive website features trivia, profiles of notable women in STEM, an in-depth exploration of STEM career opportunities, and dozens of fun and informative videos.

The site also hosts competitions for girls in STEM and maintains a list of camps where you can test the waters of space exploration, design video games, or even train to be a fighter pilot.

According to the Brookings Institution, “American companies urgently need professionals trained in STEM fields, but there are not enough workers with the necessary skills, and too few Americans earn post-secondary STEM credentials.” But perhaps the collective efforts of companies like L’Oréal and others that are working to increase the number of women in STEM will be able to change that.

Are you a girl considering a STEM career? What do you think of L’Oréal’s initiative?

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