PLEN and STEAM Experiential Learning Trips

PLEN and STEAM Experiential Learning Trips

The Douglass Public Leadership Education Network (PLEN) and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, the ARTS, and Mathematics) took Douglass students on experiential learning trips to Washington, D.C. and New York City this January. The trips were designed to cultivate leadership skills and immerse students in topics and practices unique to the fields of government and STEM.

PLEN held the Women in Public Policy and Women in STEM Policy seminars to prepare Douglass women to develop confidence, excel in leadership, and make connections in government. The seminars took place over five days in Washington, D.C. and were designed to immerse Douglass students in experiential learning. At these seminars, Douglass students attended numerous panels led by STEM and public policy professionals, participated in networking and career development events, and visited important sites around D.C.

The 10-day-long STEAM trip took place in New York City, a major hub for technology and the arts. Activities centered on bridging the gap between STEM and the arts, connecting students to women leaders in the fields of science, art, and technology, and introducing Douglass women to unique opportunities at the intersection of these fields.

Douglass student, Aditi Kiron, explains why this experience was so appealing to her, “I am an intended Mathematics major, so I have been completely engrossed in STEM for most of my life; though I have a passion for the arts. This is why this trip was so exciting for me; I was able to combine my academic interests with my passions.”

Another Douglass student, Aishwarya Kanagala, reflects on a specific highlight of the trip for her, “I particularly enjoyed our visit to the New York Hall of Science, where we viewed SciArt Center’s “Infinite Potentials” exhibit on stem cells. When viewing the works that were displayed, I felt myself being emotionally transported. I never knew that something as rigid and logical as science could have this impact. Thus, I was able to see science and art in action.”
The future of government, STEM, and the arts can only become brighter with Douglass women being given the opportunity to participate in events that develop their confidence, widen their perspective, and empower them to become tomorrow’s leaders.