ANSONIA, Conn. (WTNH) — In an effort to encourage science, technology, math, and engineering (STEM), Ansonia Middle School partnered with Sikorsky Lockheed Martin Aircraft for a two-day virtual event. 

The partnership allowed for about 100 female students to participate in the Women in Engineering event. Of course all virtual amid the pandemic. It encouraged students to start thinking about possible careers in the STEM fields and even introduced them to some female engineers. 

John LaRovera is the director of math and science for Ansonia Public Schools and he tells News 8, “We’re just hoping to create an awareness that outside of science, technology, engineering, and math, that there are physical careers and job titles outside of just science or math.” 

He adds, “We want to extend the knowledge and examples and visuals outside of those four letters.”

News 8 was with the girls for their second day of the event. They built a cardboard plane with the help of volunteers from Sikorsky Lockheed Martin Aircraft. Each student got their own materials and it was a great way to have an activity in the time of a pandemic.

Principal Pete Colaccino says, “So much of schooling is working cooperatively and they haven’t had an opportunity to do that this year so this is finally an opportunity to put it together, do so in a safe manner and actually see their production and work.” 

Alleyanna Figueroa is an eighth-grade student and she participated in the event. She tells News 8 she is interested in the engineering career field because her uncle is an engineer: “He thinks it’s awesome because there aren’t many girls in our family, it’s mainly boys so it’s cool for him.” 

The school district is looking forward to the partnership and says they’re hoping to expand on STEM activities and events for all students throughout Ansonia.