I have become a regular supporter of Girl Scouts the past few years through the Give. Help. Repeat. program. There are two very different reasons behind my support — one related to education and one more personal.
STEM education is a crucial part of the future economy of Indiana and the U.S. As the past head of the Indiana statewide I-STEM Resource Network, I found Girl Scouts to be an early and active supporter of STEM education for girls. The strong emphasis on STEM education in Girl Scouts is impressive. Girl Scouts has had a long history with STEM and is building on that history by ensuring that girls have access to STEM badges and curriculum at all program age levels.
Diverse curriculum exists at all program age levels with a goal to embrace and celebrate scientific discovery in their lives. From the many badges available to the quality of the lessons, Girl Scouts have access to great curriculum and learning experiences. Coupled with hands-on experiences, these STEM learning opportunities can advance participation in STEM careers, or just help girls become more comfortable with STEM subjects. No matter the interest, there are Girl Scout programming options available to foster that interest.
My personal story begins with a young acquaintance who expressed transgender needs. We were worried about acceptance in school, sports and activities such as Girl Scouting. The local Girl Scout troop has been welcoming, accommodating and we couldn’t ask for a better environment. The acceptance of individuals from the LGBTQ community into Girl Scouts speaks volumes about the leadership and values of Girl Scouting.
Being open to accepting individuals where they are in life’s journeys and supporting her dreams and aspirations is what makes Girl Scouting great. Learn more at girlsscoutsindiana.org.
Paul Ainslie, member-at-large
Girl Scouts of Central Indiana Board of Directors