Physics & CS Collaboration Launch Camp for Gender-diverse Youth
Article by Sajjan Grewal, PHAS Outreach Staff.
For the very first time this coming summer, the UBC Physics & Astronomy Department - in collaboration with the Department of Computer Science - is hosting a female-identified and gender-diverse-only Physics and Computer Science camp from July 17th - July 21st for youth ages 13-15. As female-identified and gender-diverse groups are underrepresented in STEM fields, it’s important to provide safe learning spaces dedicated to helping these groups excel. Understanding that both environment and participants play a large role in the learning process, this camp aims to deliver a supportive and welcoming space to keep the students engaged while learning the forces of nature alongside the power of code!
Through this camp the students will participate in both Computer Science and Physics-centered activities. The computer science portion will be exploring the fundamentals of coding through the programming and control of a microcontroller, while the physics component includes the building of complex electrical circuits and an introduction to particle physics.
Michele Ng, Special Projects Coordinator for the Computer Science Department, says "We're excited to offer this camp because we know that representation matters. Girls and gender-diverse individuals are underrepresented in computer science and physics, and we want to change that. By offering this camp, we hope to inspire more young women to pursue careers in STEM fields."
Of course, it would be a little dull if a science camp was all work and no play; campers can expect daily outdoor games, guest speakers, a robotics lab visit, a spectacular physics show, and a trip to the pool to beat off the summer heat! All is included as part of the camp, and in an environment based on inclusivity, it’s a welcoming introduction to the fields of Physics and Computer Science.
"As a queer woman interested in STEM, I wish I had the opportunity to attend a camp like this when I was younger,” says Yuka Ma, Physics Outreach Assistant. “All-female and all-gender-diverse events like this camp are essential for breaking down gender stereotypes and societal biases, especially in the tech industry. I've personally experienced the empowerment and support these types of events provide, and I recommend them to others in STEM. I'm proud to be part of a department that's actively working to create more inclusive spaces in STEM."
To get more info on camp registration, please visit https://outreach.phas.ubc.ca/summer-camps/ or contact the UBC Physics & Astronomy outreach team via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.