Who Are We
Expanding Your Horizons at Berkeley is a group of graduate students, post-docs and undergraduate women from a broad range of STEM departments (chemistry, molecular and cellular biology, neuroscience, biophysics, etc), experiences, and backgrounds at UC Berkeley. We want to share our passion for STEM subjects with younger women and girls, to encourage them to pursue STEM subjects in their future studies and careers. In the United States, cultural gender stereotypes dictate that women are less capable of excelling in STEM fields than men. This stereotype manifests in both an achievement gap for girls at the K-12 level in STEM subjects, as well as in the underrepresentation of women in STEM professions. Research has shown that particularly middle school represents a critical period in which young women first begin to question whether STEM subjects are “for them” and lose interest in STEM fields.
EYH at Berkeley aims to encourage middle school girls to explore and participate in STEM activities by giving them access to education and mentorship from women in STEM fields, reducing the attrition of young women from science and mathematics fields. Founded in 2012, EYH at Berkeley hosts an annual conference where over 300 middle school girls from the East Bay Area community have the opportunity to visit the UC Berkeley campus and explore STEM subjects through hands-on workshops led by female mentors that are experts in their fields. The EYH conference offers an exciting keynote speaker, a full day of hands-on workshops, and opportunities for the girls to closely interact with undergraduate and graduate student mentors working in STEM related fields.
Our conferences feature unique and engaging workshops that were prepared and supervised throughout the day by volunteers from a wide range of STEM departments of the UC Berkeley campus including:
Code for Life: Let’s talk about DNA – what actually is DNA? Why do genetic differences matter? Most importantly, how do your genes make you YOU? In this workshop, we’ll use hands-on activities to learn about these questions and more.
Science of Slime: We all love to play with slime, but how do you make it? In this workshop you will become an engineer at a toy company! We will conduct a series of stretchiness and bounciness experiments to make the perfect slime.
Edible Water Capsules, Replacing Single-Use Plastics: Disposable plastics – we use them once, then we throw them away! How can we replace these plastics with similar but more sustainable materials? This workshop will let you make your own edible water capsules, learn about green chemistry, and explore solutions to the single-use plastics problem.
On Saturday March 11th, the UC Berkeley Chapter of Expanding Your Horizons hosted our twelfth annual conference. We had the opportunity to reach around 300 young science enthusiasts from various schools around the Bay Area.
This past year we were thrilled to introduce a transportation program that provided buses for students to and from the conference. As transportation can be a significant barrier to participation, we piloted this program in hopes of increasing accessibility and it was a great success!
Once at the conference, the participants had the chance to immerse themselves in a full day of hands-on exploration, ranging from introductions to food science and animal behavioral studies to the basics of computer science. The fifteen workshops were prepared and supervised throughout the day by volunteers from a wide range of STEM departments of the UC Berkeley campus.
The day was topped off by our keynote speaker, Dr. Huan Yan. Dr Yan has a background in Chemical Physics and she is currently the Director of Research and Development Analytics at Impossible Foods, a company that develops plant-based substitutes for meat products. Impossible Foods believes that a more sustainable future starts in the classroom with young students, so they’ve collaborated to create a curriculum for middle school students that focuses on green chemistry and sustainable science classroom materials. It was a pleasure hearing from Dr. Yan about how we can use food chemistry to make a more sustainable planet!
Additionally, many of our participants’ parents registered to attend the parents’ workshop aiming to provide information and guidance in encouraging their children to further their STEM education.
Importantly, our organization is committed to making the conference accessible and fair to those from underrepresented and disadvantaged backgrounds. For the second time, this year, thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, we were able to offer the conference free of charge to all participants who applied to waive the registration fee.
How Your Support Helps
Despite the hundreds of volunteers that will donate their time to the EYH conference, it still costs over $25,000 to provide a day of interactive learning for al the students. We are committed to ensuring the conference remains accessible for all young women and therefore ask for only $15 per student in registration fees. Furthermore, we are committed to honoring every single scholarship request. Your donation to the EYH conference at Berkeley will have a significant impact on our ability to inspire the next generation of female scientists, engineers, and mathematicians. With your support, we hope to be able to offer over 300 conference scholarships to young girls across the Bay Area, ensuring that our STEM education program is accessible regardless of socioeconomic status.
- 2016 – 466 registered
- 2017 – 461 registered
- 2018 – 390 registered
- 2019 – 428 registered
- 2020 – 450 registered
- 2021 – 236 registered
- 2022 – 275 registered
- 2023 – 439 registered
We are seeking $5,000 to sponsor over 300 students to participate in the conference. The cost for each student to attend the conference is $15 which includes an EYH at Berkeley T-shirt, all the necessary materials sent to them for workshops they are interested in, and mentorship from UC Berkeley graduate students, post-docs, and undergraduates in STEM. Additionally, all parents will have the opportunity to participate in a parents’ workshop to learn how to support and prepare their child for a college education and explore ways to foster their interest in STEM fields. Your support for the EYH conference at Berkeley will have a significant impact on our ability to inspire the next generation of female scientists, engineers, and mathematicians. Please consider donating and sharing our page with your friends and family! Thank you!
Questions? Email us at email@example.com or contact Miah Pitcher, co-chair of the Finance team, directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Want to learn more about the network of Expanding Your Horizons conferences powered by Techbridge girls? Visit their website!