Summer Explore Engineering Design Course for High School Girls is taking applications

April 27, 2017 | Janika Carey
Explore Engineering participant presenting project

An Explore Engineering participant presents her project during the summer 2016 course.

For one week each summer, high school girls from across the country gather at Sweet Briar College — one of just two women’s colleges in the country to offer an ABET-accredited engineering degree — to design and build creative engineering projects. They also meet with engineering professionals to find out what it’s like to work in the field. Registration is now open for this year’s Explore Engineering Design Course, which takes place June 18-23.

Explore Engineering is a series of immersive engineering design courses for high school sophomore, junior and senior girls. In addition to the weeklong pre-college, for-credit course offered in the summer, Sweet Briar’s Margaret Jones Wyllie ’45 Engineering Program also holds weekend events in the spring and fall.

Explore Engineering events are geared toward high school girls interested in the field of engineering. No experience is needed, as Sweet Briar faculty and engineering majors will teach participants all relevant skills, including brainstorming and prototyping; circuits, sensor and motor basics; machine shop and hand-tool basics; Arduino programming basics; and how to work effectively as a team.

Throughout the week, students collaborate on engineering projects and solve problems creatively in a team setting. Highlights this year include designing and building smart clothing, and creating and testing sustainable concrete. At the end of the week, participants will demonstrate the results of their hard work at a special exhibition.

Kaelyn Leake helps Explore Engineering participants

Assistant professor of engineering Kaelyn Leake ’09 helps students with their project during the summer 2016 Explore Engineering Design Course.

Participants in the summer course are housed in residence halls with Sweet Briar students and have the chance to experience the College’s 3,250-acre campus through various indoor and outdoor activities, such as swimming in the lake or pool. They’ll also tour a local engineering company and participate in a panel session with Sweet Briar College engineering alumnae.

An optional campus tour will be offered at the beginning of the program.

Registrations are accepted on a rolling basis; however, priority will be given to applications received by May 1. A $100 deposit is due with registration. Total participant cost is $700, which includes all meals, lodging, supplies and tuition (due May 15). A limited number of need-based, half-tuition scholarships are available.

For more information or to register, visit the Explore Engineering website.

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