DHHS GAINS Club Inspired by National Conference

Posted Wednesday May 09, 2018 by admin

DHHS GAINS Club Inspired by National Conference

The following is published by permission:

Dear Madison Foundation:

I am writing to thank you for your tremendous generosity this past spring.

In the fall of 2017 a new chapter of the GAINS club (Girls Advancing in STEM) was established at Daniel Hand High School [Editor’s note: STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math].  The purpose of the club is to open the hearts, mind and eyes of female students to the possibilities available to them through careers in STEM. We are fortunate to have many women living locally who have come to speak about their work and research in fields of anthropology, pharmaceuticals, medicine, pathology, and more.

In December, I was invited to bring six students to participate in the GAINS national conference. The conference, held in New York City this past March, far exceeded our expectations. Various female role models who exemplify the grit needed to pursue a dream gave each of our girls the confidence to ask themselves “Why not me?”  Our group toured renowned research labs, the NYU School of Engineering Maker Space, The Mount Sinai Medical School, and went behind the scenes at the Central Park Zoo. We shared and celebrated our common interests in STEM and learned that there is in fact a network of support out there: women helping women. We met girls and their teachers from California to Tennessee.

These life-changing experiences could only be had first-hand. There is no way I can convey to you the power of being immersed in the moment.  I can say unequivocally that without your help none of this would have been possible. Raising the funds to make this trip happen for these girls was overwhelming. Your help made it happen. I have included a few photos as well as some of their comments below.  Please take a minute to read them. Thank you again for your generosity.

Sincerely yours,

Elisa Brako
Biology Teacher
GAINS Faculty Advisor
Daniel Hand High School
Madison, CT

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