Summer is a time of bounty, and what a bounty we’ve got this year! From engineering workshops to dance classes to college courses, this summer promises the best of the best. Just watch as our girls get healthier, better educated, and more confident. Here’s how …
… girls get healthy this summer
Our teens: Our Eureka! scholars will certainly hit the labs at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst—but they’ll also hit the athletic center where they’ll take a yoga, Zumba, or spin class. In addition, they’ll study wellness topics like stress management, healthy meal planning, and how to include physical activities during the day. That last one they’ve got covered: Armed with pedometers, Eureka! scholars walk the walk on campus—an average of three miles a day!
Our younger girls: Did someone just try a Twyla Tharp move? Is that Tchaikovsky lilting out of Open Square? A big thanks to our neighbor, the Massachusetts Academy of Ballet, which graciously offered their Holyoke studio this summer so the girls can learn about ballet, jazz, and contemporary dance. The program is spearheaded by two Mount Holyoke women, dance professor Rose Flachs and dance major Nora Buonagurio. They’ll be using the Pocket Full of Feelings visual art curriculum the girls explored this spring. But now the girls will express those emotions through interpretive dance.
… and educated
Our teens: First-year and second-year Eureka! scholars will take STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) workshops on everything from architecture to botany to computer coding. The girls will also conduct surveys for a UMass study on possible environmental causes of breast cancer. Meanwhile, our third-year “externs” will have jobs at the Hitchcock Center for the Environment, Holyoke Children’s Museum, New England Public Radio and more—and earn $500 each for their labors.
Our younger girls: Say hello to Through my Window, an engineering program for youth, founded by Smith College and Springfield Technical Community College, and funded by the National Science Foundation. Our girls will learn about topics like artificial intelligence, engineering design, and engineering ethics. How? In part, by reading and playing games based on the clever STEAM children’s mystery book Talk to Me, by local author/engineer Sonia Ellis, in which savvy engineering saves the day.
… and confident
Our teens: For the first time ever, our fourth-year Eureka! scholars will dive into an entire college course. The goal is twofold: to gain college-level knowledge—but also confidence in college readiness, a crucial step for our girls, who are often first-generation college students. Together, three hours every day, the girls will buckle down for Intro to Forensic Science with Holyoke Community College social sciences professor Stacey Matarazzo. They’ll learn lab techniques, how to write reports, and how to characterize DNA from biological samples. Bonus: They’ll get both high school and college credit for the course!
Our younger girls: Thanks to Google for Entrepreneurs #40Forward Initiative, Girls Inc. and a youth entrepreneurial program called Lemonade Day have teamed up to help bring out every girl’s inner business tycoon. Our girls will plan, budget, buy supplies, market, and sell lemonade at various hot spots around Holyoke. Look for the girls around town and enjoy a cool drink and see this cool project in action.