There’s been a lot of talk about STEM lately. The acronym – which stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math – represents a professional field that has traditionally been pursued by more men than women. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economics and Statistics Administration, half as many women as men are working in the STEM fields. That’s why so many organizations, educational institutions, and companies have been trying to reach out to girls and young women in new and exciting ways that will encourage them to consider STEM areas when thinking about their future careers.
General Electric – commonly known as simply GE – has been an important contributor to the effort in recent years. Using the hashtag #BalanceTheEquation, the company has created and supported a number of campaigns designed to reach aspiring women scientists. The goal is to increase the number of women occupying STEM positions in GE’s organization by 20,000 by the year 2020. And this week in New York City’s Grand Central Station, GE sponsored an incredible display that honored 12 female scientists and engineers from history who made inspiring contributions to the STEM fields.
The captivating exhibit was projected onto the ceiling of the Grand Central Terminal
In a public statement the company shared why this exhibit was so important to them. “In addition to internal hiring and retention goals, GE also wants to publicly celebrate influential female scientists and engineers so more young women consider careers in the field,” the statement read.
Though there were many incredible women to choose from, GE focused on some of the most unique and inspiring stories of women in STEM. From Mildred Dresselhaus, called the “queen of carbon science” and the first woman to receive the National Medal of Science in Engineering, to Laurie Leshin, a geochemist who helped search for life on Mars and is the first female president of the Worcester Polytechnic Institute, the exhibit was full of smart, inspiring women.
Even Facebook joined the campaign by allowing people passing through Grand Center to use geofilters and themed frames to display selfies taken with the beautiful projections through the end of the campaign last night.
The efforts of GE, Facebook, and the Grand Central Station allowed for a truly unique and inspiring spectacle to be shared with an unknown multitude of women and girls around the world who stand to be touched and encouraged by the stories of those who went before them. And as long as we all keep extending STEM opportunities to all our children, we will Balance the Equation and change the world together.