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Planning Approach For The Society Of Women Engineers Mentoring Girl Scouts

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Outreach: Future Women in Engineering II

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.991.1 - 9.991.12



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Paper Authors

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Sue Ellen Haupt

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Jessica Gregory

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Planning Approach for the Society of Women Engineers Mentoring Girl Scouts Sue Ellen Haupt, Jessica D. Gregory

Utah State University/ Pennsylvania State University


Utah State University College of Engineering is actively working on recruiting and retaining women in engineering. This project is one that combines the two toward affecting both goals at once. The Society of Women Engineers (SWE) section at USU has organized a mentoring system with the local Girl Scout council. The primary idea is a top-down mentoring approach where activities are designed and run by women and girls that are a step ahead of the participants. In this way, each group is “paying back” the mentoring to the next lower level.

The USU student SWE section runs a mentoring program to help Cadette and Senior Girl Scouts (middle and high school girls) earn an interest patch related to science and engineering. Engineering professionals mentor the SWE engineering students and provide a panel discussion for the older scouts. Thes older Girl Scouts then join the SWE section in running a Badge-in-a-Day Engineering clinic for Junior Girl Scouts (grades 3 through 6). In this way, the elementary school girls are introduced to the fun aspects of science and technology, having a good time while sampling hands-on projects. The middle and high school girls learn about science and technology more in-depth by working directly with the SWE members on their projects, then having the opportunity to teach what they have learned to the younger girls. The SWE members become involved in reaching out to the next generation of potential engineers. When the SWE members become active in helping others learn about science and engineering, they are more likely to feel camaraderie with their peers, mentoring each other, and thus are less likely to feel isolated and drop out of engineering. Thus, by this tiered mentoring approach, we are recruiting the younger girls into potential engineering careers and working to retain the college level women in their engineering programs.

Planning for this project was done using a Logic Model formulation, which begins by defining the desired long term objectives. Given the available inputs, one can then plan the desired shorter term outcomes and the activities that would help meet those goals. Using this organized approach, it is then much easier to determine how to best measure whether the objectives are being met. This approach was highly successful and resulted in an evaluation process that was integrated into the project. 1

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering

Haupt, S. E., & Gregory, J. (2004, June), Planning Approach For The Society Of Women Engineers Mentoring Girl Scouts Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13980

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