ColoradoFIRST

Empowering Women in STEM: Colorado FIRST Launches Women In STEM Program

In the ever-evolving landscape of STEM education and opportunity, the inaugural debut of the Colorado FIRST Women In STEM (CFWS) program during the 2023-2024 season marked a significant milestone. With generous grant funding allocated to raise awareness and support for women in STEM fields, this initiative aims to inspire and equip the next generation of female leaders in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

New Program Coordinator for CFWS

Leading the charge is Jocelyn Holman, a Senior Engineering Physics major at Colorado School of Mines and recipient of the esteemed, full-tuition,  Grewcock Presidential Scholarship. Jocelyn’s journey with Colorado FIRST began as a student participant in middle and high school, where she experienced firsthand the transformative power of robotics and STEM education. Her passion for fostering opportunities for women in STEM was fueled during her tenure as a Regional Judge Advisor for Colorado FIRST Lego League (FLL), where she witnessed the impact of mentorship and encouragement on young aspiring engineers and scientists and as a team member of a The Highlanders FRC Robotics Team in high school.

As part of her scholarship requirements, Jocelyn embarked on a Senior Capstone project involving off-campus leadership. It was through her former robotics coach, Debbie English, now the FIRST Robotics Competition Partner for Colorado FIRST, that Jocelyn was entrusted with the role of program coordinator for the newly launched CFWS program. Her infectious energy, coupled with her unwavering dedication to advancing opportunities for women in STEM fields, made her the perfect candidate for the position.

“I love this position because I can directly work with students. It is such an honor to be a mentor and give back to Colorado FIRST, which gave me the confidence to pursue a STEM degree and career,” shared Jocelyn, reflecting on her role and the impact it allows her to make.

The Mission of CFWS

The overarching goal of CFWS is to promote equal inclusion of all genders in STEM fields and empower individuals to lead with confidence and determination. In its inaugural year, the CFWS program hosted a series of engaging events that reached over 200 students, inspiring them to explore and pursue opportunities in STEM. Some of the standout events included:

  • Young Minds in STEM Booth
  • Message in a Bottle: Networking with Professionals
  • STEM Professionals Discussion Panel
  • Jewelry Making Workshop
  • Presentations from All-Women STEM Organizations
  • 5×5 Lecture Series – Five Speakers Present 5-Minute Lectures
  • E-Textiles Booth

Participation from organizations and businesses within the community further enriched these events, with notable contributors including Arrow Electronics, Colorado School of Mines, Muon Space, Sierra Space, St. Mary’s Academy, Phi Sigma Rho Sorority, and SMAbotics FRC Team.

Support and Connection for STEM Students

CFWS events are designed to foster support and connection for all attendees, focusing on career exploration and networking opportunities. Buoyed by the success of its inaugural year, CFWS is poised to expand its offerings in the coming year, with plans for even more impactful events and initiatives on the horizon.

For those interested in volunteering or contributing to networking or panel discussions, Jocelyn invites you to reach out at CFWS@coloradofirst.org and sign up for the CFWS newsletter on their webpage to be notified of upcoming events. Together, we can continue to empower and inspire the next generation of women in STEM, shaping a brighter and more inclusive future for all.

Women in STEM
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