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Learn about Department of State initiatives for women in STEM.

Department of State Program Focuses on Women in STEM


December 17, 2012

In December 2011, the U.S. Department of State launched the NeXXt Scholars Initiative.  The purpose of this initiative is to give young women in other countries the opportunity to increase their involvement in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields. Recently, the Department of State announced that the first group of scholars has begun their studies.

The initiative has brought 12 women from Middle Eastern countries to study at eight women’s colleges in the United States. Since the initiative partners with women’s colleges, it “focuses on increasing opportunities for women from countries with a Muslim-majority population to access a hands-on, inquiry-based STEM undergraduate education in the United States, and responds to Secretary Clinton’s core mission of educating and advancing women worldwide.”

The goal of the initiative is to “encourage and empower young women” with an education in STEM fields. These women will also engage in leadership training and will begin “fostering mutual respect and understanding across cultures and building a strong network of women scientists, engineers and innovators to together solve tomorrow’s global challenges.”

These international students partner with a student from the United States. The New York Academy of Sciences provides career support services to these women, along with various other benefits that come with participating in the initiative.

Through the NeXXt Scholars Initiative, the Department of State partners with “38 U.S. women’s colleges, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), EducationUSA, and the New York Academy of Sciences.”  If you want to be a part of the second group of scholars in Fall 2013, contact your closest EducationUSA advising center for more information and further instructions.

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