Spring 2017 Explore Engineering Weekend for High School Girls is taking applications

January 9, 2017 | Janika Carey
Students work on a creative electrical engineering project during the Summer 2016 Explore Engineering Design Course.

Students work on a creative electrical engineering project during the Summer 2016 Explore Engineering Design Course at Sweet Briar.

Registration is now live for Sweet Briar College’s Spring 2017 Explore Engineering Weekend, which takes place on campus Friday, March 24, through Saturday, March 25. The event is open to high school girls in their sophomore, junior and senior years.

During the weekend, participants will work in teams with Sweet Briar professors and current students in the College’s Margaret Jones Wyllie ’45 Engineering Program on a hands-on creative project that is suitable for beginners and experienced students alike. In addition to technical skills, they will learn about the design process — from brainstorming to testing to revising prototypes.

Students also will gain valuable insight into working as an engineer, being an engineering student, and what they could do with an engineering degree from Sweet Briar.

The College is one of just two women’s colleges in the U.S. to offer an ABET-accredited B.S. in engineering. A recently added computer science program will launch this fall, pending approval by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. It will provide additional training and career perspectives to students interested in STEM fields.

Registration for the Spring 2017 Explore Engineering Weekend is $35, which includes lodging, meals, snacks, a T-shirt and supplies. Interested students may register online or contact Rebecca Girten at rgirten@sbc.edu or (434) 381-6447. It is recommended that participants register by March 8, as space in the program is limited.

A student uses a drill to prepare her abacus during the Summer 2016 Explore Engineering Design Course.

A student uses a drill to prepare her abacus during the Summer 2016 Explore Engineering Design Course.

The weekend begins at 4 p.m. Friday, March 24, with an optional campus tour led by admissions. Explore Engineering students then meet at 5 p.m. over dinner and begin their projects that evening. All participants are housed overnight with Sweet Briar student mentors. A full day of designing, building and experimenting wraps up at 5 p.m. Saturday with a closing exhibition for family and friends.

Explore Engineering is a series of immersive engineering design courses for high school sophomore, junior and senior girls. Weekend events are offered in the spring and fall, and a weeklong pre-college, for-credit course is offered in the summer. Over the past eight years, more than 400 students have attended an Explore Engineering event, designing and building such things as computer-controlled smart wearables, automated musical devices, sustainable building materials, automatically refilling pet bowls, electromechanical drawing machines and optical bass guitars.

For more information, visit the Explore Engineering website.

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