The main goal for GEMS is to expose middle school students to different opportunities in STEM fields and to spark their interest in these types of career fields.
Our goal is to create an awareness of the current inequality in careers in STEM career fields and provide students with the knowledge and power to create a future of shared respect in these fields. According to Alysson Light, Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of the Sciences, “While women have nearly reached gender parity in biomedical sciences, they still make up only about 18% of the students receiving undergraduate degrees in computer science…across studies, participants were consistently more likely to describe a discipline as a “soft science” when they’d been led to believe that proportionally more women worked in the field. Moreover, the “soft science” label led people to devalue these fields – describing them as less rigorous, less trustworthy and less deserving of federal research funding. Read more about Dr. Light’s study here. While this program targets female students, registration is available to all qualifying students regardless of their sex or gender identity.
Each year, we offer fun, unique, hands-on workshops to keep the program innovative. We have offered workshops on bridge building/architectural to dissecting cow eyes, extracting DNA, fingerprinting, and forensics, to veterinary science and so much more. Take a look at the past brochures to see the many different workshops offered.
Morning Mini Parent Conference
We believe understanding your middle school student is important. We provide all parents with the opportunity to stay and enjoy our guest speakers in the morning. We provide two presentations to the parents on higher education and a topic that is relevant to raising a middle school student. In the past, topics have included ‘Timeline for College’, ‘Keeping your Teen Safe Online’, ‘Helping your Teen with Anxiety’, ‘DOJ Human Trafficking’, and more!
Thank You to Our Sponsors
A big thank you to our sponsors who helped make past GEMS possible!
- American Association of University Women (AAUW)
- SPX Transformer Solutions
- American Society of Civil Engineers
- Lois Clementi
- Waukesha County Women & Girls Fund
Your donations have made this program possible!
Become a GEMS Sponsor
Are you a professional in the fields of Engineering, Math, or Science? We are accepting workshop volunteers for the spring of 2022. If you have an idea for a GEMS workshop and would like to volunteer, please contact Holly Johnson.
Continuing Education at Washington County
- 400 S. University Drive, West Bend, WI 53095
Continuing Education at Waukesha
- 1500 N. University Drive, Waukesha, WI 53188
Commons Building, Room C111
(Closed on Fridays during the summer)
Continuing Education Director
Continuing Education Program Manager