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Monthly Highlight: Women’s History Month

March is Women’s History Month, and this year’s theme is “Women Who Advocate for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.” No one exemplifies this better than the women of STELAR and the women who work on the hundreds of ITEST projects STELAR has supported since 2003.

“Strategies for equity in STEM education” is one of the pillars of ITEST, and ensuring equitable STEM education for young women and girls has been the goal of many ITEST projects. (See below for a sample of these.) The women researchers, data analysts, and other experts on the STELAR team not only work for gender equity in STEM, they also serve as role models for girls considering careers in the STEM workforce of the future. For instance, STELAR’s Joyce Malyn-Smith is a national expert on STEM career development and workforce education and is a pioneer in the effort to develop industry/education connections in advanced technologies. Her most recent blogpost, “Technical Intuition—Preparing Students for Work at the Human-Technology Frontier”—describes five key actions that educators can take to nurture students’ STEM career development.

All of us at STELAR are inspired by the women we work with. We’re proud to advocate for equity, diversity, and inclusion in STEM, this month and every month!

  • Engaging Secondary Female Students in Ubiquitous Intelligence and Computing
    This project aims to broaden the participation of female students in STEM and ICT fields through a five-week summer camp and STEM competition. It is expected to increase the students’ knowledge, skills, and interests in STEM careers and contribute to research on female students’ self-concept construction and motivations for learning STEM.
  • Engaging Women in Engineering: Training Mentors to Make a Difference
    This research investigated how and to what extent a largely homogeneous group of working engineers can enter mentoring relationships that increase participation in their field by underrepresented populations. Mentor candidates were enrolled in a year of professional development training in culturally relevant pedagogies and ways to combat stereotype barriers, prior to entering mentoring relationships.
  • Who Likes Computer Science? How Gender Stereotypes About Interest Shape Children’s Motivation
    This project studied how interest stereotypes affect girls' motivation, whether interest stereotypes have a stronger negative impact than ability stereotypes on motivation for computer science, and whether it is possible to intervene to reduce the impact of interest stereotypes.

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Project Spotlight: IREX


This month, STELAR is pleased to spotlight the Exploring Key Predictors of STEM/ICT Career-related Outcomes Using the World Smarts STEM Challenge Model that Incorporates Global Engagement and Mentorship project. Targeting high school youth historically underrepresented in STEM/ICT fields, project leaders from IREX and North Carolina State University engage students in interactive World Smarts challenges. Their curriculum expands students’ real-world STEM knowledge while allowing them to interact within and problem-solve for their global community. Check out our Project Spotlight page to see how this project broadens student perspective and creates a global impact!

View the project profile here. Want STELAR to spotlight your project? Fill out the form!

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Register for the 2024 ITEST PI Meeting

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Registration for the 2024 ITEST PI Meeting is now open! This year's theme is Innovating Equitable STEM Learning for the Future Technological Workforce. The meeting will engage the ITEST community in workshops designed to unpack project work through the lens of the three ITEST Pillars: Innovative Use of Technology in Teaching and Learning, Partnerships for Career and Workforce Preparation, and Strategies for Equity in STEM Education. If you’re a project PI, check your inbox for the registration invitation email! You can view more meeting details, including a tentative agenda and hotel booking information, on our website by clicking the button below.

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Join NSF & STELAR in Vegas!


Seven of those ITEST projects will present a symposium on Building Culturally Sustaining Projects and Partnerships to Support Science for the 'Rest of Us' on Tuesday, March 19. Stick around after the event to learn more about the presentations and posters!


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On March 27-28 NSF and STELAR will be at the University of Las Vegas for a workshop designed to help you develop a competitive proposal for the NSF ITEST Program! Please share this workshop information with your colleagues (researchers, developers, and partners) from NV institutions!n

Registration Information