Maunakea stewards inspire Girl Scouts to think about STEM careers

At the Girl Scouts of Hawai‘i STEM Fest, Maunakea stewards encouraged young women to pursue college degrees and careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics-related fields.

Three schoolchildren talk with someone at an info table.
Girl Scouts from kindergarten to 12th grade attended STEM Fest.

About 60 Hawai‘i Island Girl Scouts learned about careers in astronomy and conservation on Maunakea. On Nov. 10, members of the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo Center for Maunakea Stewardship participated in the Girl Scouts of Hawai‘i STEM Fest at Aunty Sally’s Lū‘au Hale in Hilo to encourage young women to pursue college degrees and careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics-related fields.

Center for Maunakea Stewardship employee Krystal Schlechter, who coordinates stargazing on Maunakea, combined forces with Maunakea Ranger Blair Southworth to coordinate a hands-on activity for the Girl Scouts on the life cycle of a star. Anuhea Robins is on the center’s conservation and resource management team and shared her expertise on native species on the mauna and the work she does to protect the rare wēkiu bug found there.

Five staff stand for photo at the event.
Center for Maunakea Management staff attended the Girl Scout event to inspire the young women to consider STEM-related careers in the future. (Courtesy photo)

“Maunakea is a very special place and there are many opportunities to get involved,” says Ian Kaleo‘okalani Pilago, an education and outreach coordinator at the center. “There are different college degrees and careers available for individuals who are interested and motivated to help in the protection and stewardship of the valuable cultural and natural resources that exist on the mauna.”

Event organizers were impressed with the excitement the scouts shared about the center’s activities and invited the staff to come back to present in 2024.

Read full story at UH System News.

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