STEM Women and Daughters Challenged to Become World Changers

98 jill copy copyOver 250 women, girls, educators, community stakeholders, and business and industry leaders were challenged to push past adversity and opposition in order to become world changers. The event was a collaborative effort by Ranch View Middle School and STEM Ventures on Saturday, November 2.

Jill Tietjen, motivational speaker, author and professional engineer presented a powerful speech highlighting STEM women and girls who changed their world by solving real world problems through STEM innovation and creativity.

Ranch View Middle School Math Teachers, Tiffiny Vaughn and Eileen Mueller served as moderators of the stellar panel which was comprised of Elizabeth Fagen, DCSD Superintendent/Chemistry and Biology Teacher; Cindy Williams, former Newmont Mining Executive; Josephine Kilde, PhD Student from CU Boulder and Kenyan National; and Tinesha Ross, ULA Systems Engineer.

Tinesha admonished girls to “just keep swimming” regardless of adversarial circumstances, like Nemo did in the famous Disney movie. Tinesha recounted the story about how her mother passed away when she was just nine years old.  She refused to listen to the advice of a high school guidance counselor who told her that could not become an engineer due to lack of finances. Tinesha pressed through and continued to pursue her goal to become an aerospace engineer. Today Tinesha is a systems engineer at United Launch Alliance.

Lower Res 11-02-13 STEM Women and Our Daughters Changing the World 0063 copyKevin Larsen, Chair of the DCSD Board of Education, who coaches Math Counts at Cresthill Middle School, shared moving stories about how each of his three daughters pursued a STEM degree thanks to the K-12 education that they received at Douglas County School District. Meghann Silverthorn, DCSD Board of Education member, aerospace engineer and STEM proponent, supported the day’s festivities.

KevMegHundreds of prizes were given away to students and 16 booths from higher education and business and industry inspired students with real-world, hands-on activities.  Colorado School and Mines, Denver University Engineering School, and Metro State Aerospace and Aviation Department helped to sponsor the event together with private donors.

“This was the best STEM girl’s event I have ever attended,” said Gully Stanford, Director of Colorado STEM Network and Partnerships for College In Colorado. “This event was the highlight of the year!”

STEM Ventures is planning a new event for both boys and girls for the spring called, “STEM Engineers – Over 40 Disciplines Changing Our World.”   The event will showcase the more than 40 engineering fields and will feature lab-based, hands-on Denver Postactivities with the partnership of business and industry leaders together with higher education.

Click here to read the Denver Post Your Hub Story:

Photo gallery of the event below: 

Please click here for our partners from higher education.

Please click here for our partners from business and industry.


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