A project team of 10 middle school-aged girls from Worcester Polytechnic Institute's (WPI) Camp Reach program will present its preliminary redesign ideas for Girls Incorporated's Computer Room/Learning Lab. The team is developing a plan to reposition the Computer Room/Learning Lab, which suffers from poor location. Used for after-school programs, the Computer Room/Learning Lab provides girls ages 8-15 with access to high-tech equipment and mentoring to develop skills that open opportunities, boost self-confidence, and foster creativity. On average, 125 girls per week use the computer room.
This project emerged because Girls Inc. staffers didn't have the time to devote to a redesign of the lab. In response, the Camp Reach girls have stepped in to strategize a new design that includes necessary equipment for the computers to function and be easy to use, and – importantly – to make the new space "girl friendly." In the planning process, the campers are learning how to solve real problems faced by groups and organizations, gain public-speaking skills, and develop a keen understanding of how important teamwork is in the real world.
Monday, July 27, 2009, 1:30 p.m.
Girls Inc., 125 Providence St., Worcester, Mass.
About WPI's Camp Reach
A two-week program for girls entering grade 7, Camp Reach is part of WPI's well-respected K-12 outreach program, which is focused on introducing young people to the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields. Dozens of such WPI programs, including other summer camps, provide myriad learning opportunities and resources for both teachers and students in kindergarten through high school. Camp Reach runs July 19-31, 2009 on WPI's campus at 100 Institute Road, Worcester. Coached by three middle school teachers and nine high school counselors, 30 girls are divided into three project teams to tackle meaningful and real problems around the city. Through their project, the students learn about the engineering design process in the context of a social or humanitarian problem or need. At the end of the program, the team delivers a recommended design, along with information necessary to implement that plan.
About Girls Incorporated of Worcester
Girls Incorporated of Worcester is a non-profit organization that was founded as the Worcester Girls Club in 1916. For 93 years it has continually evolved to meet the changing needs of girls in our community. Girls Inc. is dedicated to inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold by offering quality research-based programs in a safe environment and providing opportunities for girls to take healthy risks, build leadership skills and master physical, intellectual, social and emotional challenges.