Today's Girls = Tomorrow's Great Inventors

The Lemelson-MIT Program is a program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that is dedicated to inspiring and encouraging great inventors through various outreach programs. They recently announced the results of the 2011 Lemelson-MIT Invention Index that were slightly surprising. Well surprising to some, but not to us here at SheHeroes.

This year the Lemelson-MIT Invention Index, which annually gauges Americans’ perceptions about invention and innovation, surveyed girls ages 16 – 25 and found that most of the young women possess the ideal traits for becoming inventors, but don’t realize it.

Of the young women surveyed here are some of the results,

  • 71% indicated they are creative, the characteristic they most associate with inventors
  • Only 27% describe themselves as inventive
  • 42% rate math & science as their favorite subjects in school
  • 35% say they have a family member working in a field related to science, technology, math or engineering.

Not only did the results of the survey find these young women had the skills to become successful inventors, but also the desire.

  • 57% said they are most interested in thinking of and designing a solution to problems
  • 49% are most interested in pursuing invention to improve the lives of others
  • 58% percent of the female respondents would make a health science or consumer product invention their top priority

Despite possessing the skills and desire that most qualify them to enter the fields of science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) as this survey shows, statistics show that only 10% of women end up pursuing careers in those fields.

It’s no surprise to us here at SheHeroes that girls today have what it takes to be the great innovators and inventors of tomorrow, what surprises us is that we still haven’t figured out a way to get these girls to simply go for it!

So what are you doing at your school or in your home to help inspire girls (and boys, the survey shows similar trends with young men as well) to follow a career in STEM? Here are a few ideas.

  1. Science Fairs – Get involved with your local school or community science fair. It’s a great way to get your child on the right path and to really get them excited about coming up with ideas and solutions to help the world.
  2. Visit the Library – Get some books on inventors, especially female inventors, to read with your child and inspire them by telling them stories of other kids, just like them, who grew up to change the world.
  3. Stick with SheHeroes – We already have a handful of interviews with some amazing women in the fields of STEM, watch them with your kids and keep checking back so you can stay up to date when we add new SheHero interviews to the library.

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9523 US Highway 42
Prospect, KY 40059