The Program for Women in Science & Engineering has been sponsoring the Taking the Road Less Traveled career exploration conferences for girls in grades 6-12 each year since 1987. Since that time over 60,000 6th-12th grade girls, educators, and parents have participated in the conference and gained an increased awareness and understanding of career opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).
Based on feedback from Taking the Road Less Traveled Career Conference participants and educators over the past five years, strategic improvements to the conference experience are needed to best meet the needs of today’s student. In order to make improvements to the Career Conference, our WiSE External Advisory Board has recommended a temporary suspension of the program for spring 2015. During this hiatus, WiSE will engage stakeholders (including but not limited to: parents, education professionals, administrators, ISU faculty, presenters, program staff and undergraduate students) in the process of improving the experiential nature of the conference. Other challenges we will address include:
- Program registration and payment process
- Long waitlists (over 500 girls each semester)
- Programmatic needs of different age groups
The Program for Women in Science and Engineering is committed to continuing the Taking the Road Less Traveled Career Conferences in the fall 2015. In the meantime, we would like to offer educators the option of a Student Role Model visit to their classroom throughout the spring semester. Iowa State University undergraduate students will bring hands-on activities into the classroom and share their experiences in college and in STEM. To learn more about the Student Role Model Program, browse activities or request a classroom visit, go to www.wise.iastate.edu/rolemodels.html.If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Lora Leigh Chrystal, Director, directly at email@example.com or 515-294-4317. In the meantime, WiSE staff will post updates on this page throughout the spring on our progress.
Frequently Asked Questions about the future of Taking the Road Less Traveled: A Career Conference for Girls
Will the new program for high school juniors and seniors still be offered on March 6 & 7, 2015?
Yes, SWE U will still be offered. Registration will begin shortly and a link will be provided when it goes live.
Is Taking the Road Less Traveled really canceled for the April 2015 series?
Unfortunately, yes. In order to make improvements to the conference we need to suspend the April conferences. The Program for Women in Science and Engineering is committed to offering programs in the fall of 2015. Please check back for updates on our progress.
Expected Outcomes for 6th-12th grade female participants
- Increase interest in STEM
- Increase student engagement in STEM
- Increase confidence through interaction and communication with professional, female role models
- Increase confidence through experiential activities
- Increase awareness of STEM career opportunities
- Reinforce the importance and relevance of science and math courses in middle school and high school
- Increase capacity for understanding the connection between curriculum and real world experience
Information on Becoming a Presenter
Impact the lives of girls across the state of Iowa by becoming a Taking the Road Less Traveled Presenter. Contact Lora Leigh Chrystal, Director at (515) 294-4317 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more!
Contact Lora Leigh Chrystal, Director at (515) 294-4317 or email@example.com.