Girls in STEM mentor program empowers HISD middle schoolers

The Girls in STEM program recently concluded its successful 10-week mentoring program intended to inspire middle school girls to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The program is a collaboration sponsored by bp and Infosys Foundation USA, and engaged students from HISD’s West Briar Middle School, providing them with valuable insights and hands-on experiences.

“We are incredibly grateful for the support from bp and Infosys Foundation USA in bringing the Girls in STEM mentor program to our students,” said Cherranda Smith, HISD Community Relations Liaison. “This initiative has provided our middle school girls with invaluable opportunities to explore STEM careers, engage with industry professionals, and envision a brighter future filled with endless possibilities. The impact of this program will undoubtedly inspire our students to pursue their passions and excel in STEM fields.” 

Throughout the program, employees from bp and Infosys volunteered their time to mentor the young participants once a week. The mentors shared their expertise, experiences, and passion for STEM fields, guiding the students through the Learning Blade platform to explore various STEM careers. Additionally, the participants were connected with the Million Women Mentors initiative, fostering a supportive network of women in STEM.

“The Infosys Foundation USA is proud to collaborate with bp on this first-ever corporate collaboration Girls in STEM program,” said Katherine Maloney, Executive Director, Infosys Foundation USA. “By providing mentorship and hands-on experiences, we aim to ignite the passion for STEM among middle school girls and pave the way for their future success in these fields. Together, we can make a meaningful impact on closing the gender gap in STEM professions and awaken the future generation to the importance of digital skill building.” 

To celebrate the program, a day-long event was organized at the bp office in Houston. More than 100 girls had the opportunity to interact with young women engineers and computer scientists. The event showcased exciting demonstrations, including robots, virtual reality experiences, and tower-building activities, providing the students with a fun and interactive learning environment. 

“At bp, we want to represent the world around us and make a positive contribution to the societies and communities where we operate,” said Salem Seyoum, business advisor, EVP innovation & engineering, bp. “We are thrilled to support the Girls in STEM program in collaboration with Infosys Foundation USA to help inspire and encourage girls and young women to explore careers in science, technology, engineering, and math, and hopefully empower the next generation of female leaders in these important STEM fields.”

The Girls in STEM mentor program has not only equipped the students with first-hand insights about opportunities in technology, it also inspired them to pursue their interests in STEM fields with confidence and determination. Many girls gave the program a very high post-program rating and said that they learned about careers they did not consider previously. With the support of bp and Infosys Foundation USA, the program’s positive impact will live on in the lives of these young future leaders in Houston and beyond.