“Having positive female STEM role models in mainstream media is a gift that has been decades in the making,” writes Amy. “For women of Generation X and even part of the Millennial Generation, female role models in science were few and far between.”
With women only making up 25% of the STEM workforce, positive female role models are more important than ever. And not just for young professionals–a heartbreaking study shows that girls start doubting their STEM intelligence by age 6. Enter Komal:
Komal Singh, a program manager in engineering at Google and a mother of two . . . was shocked when her four-year-old daughter announced, “Engineers are boys!” Singh and fellow female Google engineers decided to volunteer their spare time to start changing this dynamic. They wrote Ara the Star Engineer, a first-of-its-kind picture book that features real-life engineering trailblazers from diverse backgrounds with the goal of inspiring girls and children of color to explore STEM.
During her adventure, Ara is helped by a diverse set of real-life women engineering leaders of color — a Tenacious Troubleshooter, Code Commander, Prolific Problem Solver, Intrepid Innovator. The book teaches basic problem solving & computer science concepts in a whimsical manner along the way. Ara also includes an attached mini-booklet with a deeper tech dive, as well as online activity sheets with hands-on tech activities.
All profits from the book sales will be donated to charities encouraging women’s and girls’ participation in STEM fields. This book is not an official Google product but a grassroots, passion project of Google employees in their personal capacity striving for an equitable future for all girls.