Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers, and Leaders. This is how the Girl Scouts described their members at G.I.R.L. 2017, an event for nearly 10,000 Girl Scouts of all ages and adult volunteers in Columbus, Ohio on October 5-7, 2017.
The Department of Energy hosted a STEM Rising booth to showcase DOE’s energy education resources, located in the Hall of Experiences. This a one-of-a-kind expo hall divided exhibitor booths into seven themes including science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education. The DOE booth displayed some of the Department’s energy education activities and resources including:
- The STEM Rising initiative, a new a Secretarial priority initiative to showcase DOE as a leader in preparing and inspiring students, teachers, and the nation’s current workforce to pursue energy-related education and careers.
- Girls of Energy activities like an innovative device to make a smartphone into a microscope. The Girls of Energy site has exciting science experiments that can be used to explore sciences and to learn more about the cool research and development activities going on in the 17 National Laboratories.
- Educational activities for younger kids like the bioenergy coloring and activity book, Get Current: Switch on Clean Energy coloring book, and the Energy Action Plan Checklist were very popular and can be downloaded from the DOE website for free.
- Resources for older students on how to host their own BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge competition, DOE university competitions like Collegiate Wind Competition, and information on STEM internships, fellowships, and mentoring.
- Educators, troop leaders, and council members (who work with a large number of troops) came away with copies of the Energy Literacy: Essential Principles and Fundamental Concepts for Energy Education, which is an interdisciplinary approach to teaching and learning about energy. The framework identifies seven essential principles and a set of fundamental concepts to support each principle and can be used to develop curricula or activities for all ages. Some of the troop leaders and council members planned on using this to create Girl Scout badges on energy.
Joining the DOE booth were representatives from the Ohio State University (OSU) EcoCAR3 team who brought a 3-D printout of key components of the 2016 Chevrolet Camaro they are redesigning into a high performance, ultra energy-efficient car as part of the DOE’s EcoCAR3 competition. Many of the Girl Scouts from the Columbus region had seen the competition car either at local events or on a television commercial played during OSU games, and felt inspired to meet the women and men on the OSU team.