St. Louis, MO – August 6, 2018 – Girl Scouts across eastern Missouri are using science and technology to make the world a better place. When they aren’t building ozone gardens measuring air quality or engaging younger students in engineering challenges, our G.I.R.L.s (Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers, Leaders)TM are designing, coding and building robots that solve real problems. The Monsanto Fund recently awarded Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri a $25,000 grant that supports the organization’s robotics program, which inspires young women to cultivate an interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) at a young age.
Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri promotes STEM as one of its three programmatic focus areas, along with Money Management and Health. As part of its robust STEM curriculum, the Council sponsors 55 FIRST® robotic teams, more than any other youth-serving organization in the region. Generous support from dedicated community partners like the Monsanto Fund has left a lasting impact as thousands of eastern Missouri girls explore and nurture a passion for STEM and robotics.
“When we started our robotics program in 2009, we only had five teams,” said Bonnie Barczykowski, CEO of Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri. “The Monsanto Fund has been supporting this initiative since the beginning and is committed to our mission of building girls of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place. We are grateful for the Monsanto Fund’s continued investment in the future pipeline of leaders. More girls are interested in STEM because of Girl Scouts. Last year, 16,141 Girl Scouts earned STEM badges.”
Eastern Missouri Girl Scouts are doing BIG things through robotics. This past March, The Robotic Agency, one of the Council’s robotics teams, traveled to the state capital and spent the day championing their passion for STEM. These five girls, who are in fourth through eighth grade, excitedly shared with public officials what they learned about hydro dynamics and showed off their robot programmed to protect a variety of water sources. A little bit further from the Midwest, six other eastern Missouri Girl Scouts attended the global, invite-only robotics championship in Houston, Texas. The Royal Queens, a team made up of kindergarteners through fourth graders, were one of two eastern Missouri FIRST® LEGO League Jr. teams to present their clean water initiatives on the national stage.
“Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri is among many organizations that are working to positively promote math and science programs for girls,” said Michelle Insco, Monsanto Fund Program Officer. “Our support of their go-getters, innovators, risk-takers and leaders mirrors the Monsanto Fund’s committed investment of encouraging young people to pursue educational and career-based opportunities in STEM.”
The Monsanto Fund, the philanthropic arm of the Monsanto Company, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening the communities where farmers and Monsanto Company employees live and work. Visit the Monsanto Fund at monsantofund.org.