State lacks funding for spring STEM scholarships

HELENA- A STEM Girls in Government program is giving the inside scoop on information about technology careers and current technology applications to two groups of girls on September 16 and 17 in Helena.

The program is hosted and was designed by the Information Technology Managers Council with support from the Montana Girls STEM Collaborative.

They will host 15 middle and high school girls and chaperones to addresses the gender gap in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) by having state employees sharing their careers with the girls.

Two teams of girls were chosen, one from Gardiner Public Schools and the other from Salish Kootenai College- Upward Bound.

From the press release, over the course of two days, the girls will learn about careers and opportunities in information technology while interacting with professionals from Montana state agencies such as State Library; Secretary of State; Legislature; and the Departments of Administration, Commerce, Justice, Natural Resources, Revenue and Transportation.

In addition to lunch with the Governor and First Lady, the girls will learn about cybersecurity, Web development, Geographic Information Systems, data analytics, and other technology applications through fun games and activities.  Their evenings will be filled with interactive fun learning, such as going on a walking tour downtown Helena using tourism apps and learning how to use technology to monitor the bat population.  

The girls are able to attend the program for free through sponsorship from the Information Technology Manager Council and many Helena-area statewide businesses.

Christie Breland of the Department of Revenue said the goal was to help girls in rural areas learn about careers that are available in information technology and within the state government and to spark their interest.

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