SETI Institute to Lead New STEM Project with Girl Scouts: “Reaching for the Stars: NASA Science for Girl Scouts”

NASA’s Science Mission Directorate selected “Reaching for the Stars: NASA Science for Girl Scouts” as a new, 5-year space science education program that will bring together Girl Scouts with scientists, engineers and educators at NASA and beyond.

“Reaching for the Stars” will partner the Girl Scout’s national movement for girls in grades K-12 in a variety of activities that span local troop programs, Girl Scout camps, and events like the upcoming 2017 solar eclipse to engage girls in space science. 

“We are delighted that NASA has selected us to work with the Girl Scouts,” said Edna DeVore, project lead and Director of Education and Outreach at the SETI Institute. “Together with our astronomy education partners and NASA, we will create a series new Space Science badges and out of school experiences for Girl Scouts nationwide. Girl Scout leaders and girls both will benefit. We look forward to creating “Reaching for the Stars” to engage more girls in NASA content, discoveries, and careers.” 

As a recognized national leader in STEM for the Girl Scouts, the Northern California Girl Scouts are known for their work with ‘Girls Go Tech’ among initiatives that engage girls in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) careers.

“Girl Scouts of Northern California is delighted to be working with the SETI Institute and our other partners to help design and pilot “Reaching for the Stars.” Girl Scouts’ new national online volunteer toolkit, which provides a unique platform to develop a fun and up-to-date badge program for girls in grades K-12, supported by volunteers,” said Marina Park, CEO of the Girl Scouts of Northern California. “Whether girls are building solar ovens to cook their lunch, exploring the night sky at camp, or tracking the latest NASA mission  – all will be opportunities to foster curiosity and inspire more girls and the volunteers who work with them to explore science.”

“Reaching for the Stars” will bring together a team of experienced educators and scientists, NASA professionals, and the Girl Scouts nationally through the Girl Scouts of the USA headquartered in New York City. In addition to the SETI Institute and the Girl Scouts, the team includes STEM professionals at NASA’s Ames Research Center  and Goddard Space Flight Center, University of Arizona, and the Astronomical Society of the Pacific.  

There are 2,000,000 Girl Scouts and 800,000 volunteer leaders in the USA. Initial development will be carried out in partnership with Girl Scouts of Northern California (50,000 girl members and 31,000 volunteers). GSUSA will also manage program evaluation and lead dissemination of “Reaching for the Stars” to the more than 100 Girl Scout Councils over five years.

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About SETI Institute

Founded in 1984, the SETI Institute is a non-profit, multi-disciplinary research and education organization whose mission is to explore, understand, and explain the origin and nature of life in the universe. Our research encompasses the physical and biological sciences and leverages expertise in data analytics, machine learning and advanced signal detection technologies.  The Institute is a distinguished research partner for industry, academia and government agencies, including NASA and NSF.