Thousands of science and math-loving girls visited the 4th Annual Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta STEM Expo at the North Atlanta Trade Center last weekend.

With more than 2,500 girls in attendance and 40 vendors, the expo is the largest girl-serving event in the area that focuses on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Local Girl Scouts and other kids had the opportunity to watch and participate in a variety of science-based activities.

A human-sized hamster wheel and custom-styled hover board taught the girls about physics, velocity and kinetic energy. Others practiced their investigative and forensic science skills and solved the mystery of the stolen Girl Scout cookies using blood typing, hair analysis and fingerprinting. The Girl Scout robotics team, the RoboChicks, led a hands-on demonstration of an underwater robot that had earned several awards at both state and national levels.

One of the missions of Girls Scouts is to advance the involvement of girls in STEM activities and to promote the choice of science-based careers for women.

“As the largest youth-serving nonprofit in Georgia, we are committed to exciting girls about the sciences,” said Amy Dosik, CEO of the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta in a statement. “STEM-related jobs in Georgia are expected to increase almost 20 percent in the next three years and we want to prepare girls for careers in these fields.”

Many parents and troops attended the event wanted to expose their daughters to STEM in preparation for these careers, even if their first jobs are years away.

“Too many girls do not see a future in STEM career paths, and as parents we need to actively encourage them from a young age to stay engaged,” said Tania Gourley of Decatur in a statement. “This event was a great way to do that in a fun and captivating environment.”

Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta is a nonprofit leadership development organization for girls that serves 34 counties in northwest Georgia. They encourage girls to build qualities of courage, confidence and character and make the world a better place.

For more information about Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta or to join a troop, visit girlscoutsatl.org.

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