JUN 28, 2017 08:48 AM PDT

Changing a girl's world, one underwater robot at a time


The devastating reality is that currently women account for only 13% of engineers worldwide. National Geographic Explorer, submarine pilot, and founder of Girls Underwater Robot Camps, Erika Bergman, is trying to change that number. By inviting young girls and teenagers to this multi-day camp, she is exposing them to the world of engineering and giving them the opportunity to see what it feels like to identify and solve real-world problems. Through the process, the girls learn to build and pilot their own underwater robots, gaining confidence along the way. "Being able to work exclusively with other girls provides a safe atmosphere to ask questions, troubleshoot, not be afraid that they're gonna get made fun of, not be afraid that they won't be able to fix their own problems," Bergman says.

Erika knows just how lonely it can be as a woman in a STEM field. She says part of her mission in the camp is to encourage girls to pursue science professions, so that maybe in ten or twenty years she'll have a female co-pilot! She hopes that the collaboration with other girls will act as a positive feedback loop, gaining more and more momentum as more girls get involved. At the end of the camp the girls get to take the robots that they've made into the open ocean to see their results in action. This opportunity to complete the development process from start to finish gives the young adults the boost of confidence and passion that will hopefully keep them coming back for more science.
About the Author
  • Kathryn is a curious world-traveller interested in the intersection between nature, culture, history, and people. She has worked for environmental education non-profits and is a Spanish/English interpreter.
You May Also Like
SEP 10, 2018
Videos
SEP 10, 2018
Is The Human Brain Programmable?
The brain is often referred to as a computer. Researchers have tried for years to make artificial intelligence as fast and efficient as the human brain, bu...
SEP 25, 2018
Videos
SEP 25, 2018
Heal Faster
Active patient vs passive patient...
SEP 29, 2018
Videos
SEP 29, 2018
How Researchers Study the Microbes in the Human Gut
Researchers are starting to learn a lot more about the huge number of microbes living in our gastrointestinal tract. But how?...
OCT 04, 2018
Videos
OCT 04, 2018
Cannabis and Its Fight Against Cancer
Cannabis is known to treat nausea and vomiting from cancer chemotherapy. Most recent studies have revealed that THC and other cannabinoids are able to slow...
OCT 05, 2018
Videos
OCT 05, 2018
What is Site-directed Mutagenesis?
Site-directed mutagenesis is a common tool in the molecular laboratory. But someone had to pioneer it first....
OCT 14, 2018
Videos
OCT 14, 2018
An Ancient Genetic Element can Help Fight Cancer
Researchers have been trying a variety of ways to boost the immune system we all have so it's able to fight off cancer....
Loading Comments...