A paper titled Remote Mentoring Young Females in STEM through MAGIC authored by Ritu Khare, Esha Sahai and Ira Pramanick has been accepted to be published at the Sixth Conference of MIT's Learning International Networks Consortium being held from June 16th-19th, 2013, at Cambridge, Massachussetts. This paper conducts a retrospective study of MAGIC's formative years, and presents MAGIC's experience in remotely establishing mentor mentee pairs.
MAGIC mentees from The Girls' Middle School (GMS), Jordan Middle School, and Castilleja School celebrated the end of their 2012-2013 MAGIC mentoring sessions by demonstrating their projects to a house-full audience consisting of their mentors, their parents and families and the school faculty. This event, held on Tuesday, May 21st, opened with each of the nine mentees giving a short overview of their projects, followed by concurrent demo sessions. Many thanks to GMS for hosting this event!
The pilot session of MAGIC mentoring of Preuss school girls by mentors from the US Navy SPAWAR command and UCSD concluded a few days ago with a final presentation event by the mentees. Each of the seven mentee-mentors trio had prepared a demo/presentation of their MAGIC project, and these were done concurrently, as the audience moved from one station to another. The audience consisted of mentors, mentee's families, the principal, vice-principal, and some teachers from Preuss and some US Navy SPAWAR officials. The projects ranged a wide variety of topics ranging from: conducting psycho-analysis assessments to soldering metals to building sea-perches.
MAGIC kicked off its pilot session at Yeshiva of Los Angeles Girls High School (YULA) in the first week of Februay. The pilot consists of one mentor-mentee pair, and the session will last through the school year. The mentee is a senior at YULA and will be remotely mentored by her mentor who lives in the Bay Area and works for Google. YULA is a modern, orthodox all-girls high school in the Greater Los Angeles area, with an emphasis on being a top college preparatory school.
MAGIC commenced at its first school on the east coast as part of its expansion effort. The program was launched at Cambridge Street Upper School in Cambridge, Massachusetts in November. Two 8th graders were selected for the program, which will approximately run for 6 months. Both the mentors are from Boston's Children's Hospital at Harvard University.
MAGIC launched its program for the fifth straight year at The Girls' Middle School in Palo Alto, California. The number of mentee applicants was the highest to date, and seven of them were selected to participate in the program. Two are sixth graders, four are seventh graders and one is an eighth grader. One of the mentor-mentee pairs will be doing remote mentoring, with the mentor being on the East Coast, and a second one will be part remote since the mentor is in UCSC. The remaining pairs are all participating in face to face mentoring. The mentors are from Clemson University, Intel Computer Clubhouse, Google, Sandisk, Santa Clara University, Stanford, and UCSC.
A branch of MAGIC was kicked off with the NAVY's SPAWAR command unit in San Diego, California. Six professional women from the Navy are joining hands with six college students from UCSD to provide mentoring to six middle school girls from the Preuss school. The mentoring model is slightly different from the standard MAGIC model in that 1-1 mentoring is replaced with a 3-way mentoring model. Each group consists of a middle schooler (mentee), a college student (mentor) and a professional STEM woman (mentor). Of the two mentors, one has the primary role, and the other takes on a secondary role, filliing in for the primary as needed. A side effect of this is that the college student gets some implicit mentoring by the STEM professional.
MAGIC kicked off its third year at Oak Grove High School in San Jose. Two mentees, one a sophomore and the second a junior were selected for this session, and a third mentee is on the waiting list. Both mentors are from the bay area, thus both these mentees will be mentored face to face. One of the mentors works at Google and the other one is an independent STEM professional, having worked at Sun Microsystems and NetApp in the past.
A middle schooler from Jordan School in Palo Alto is the first 2012 fall MAGIC mentee. The Jordan school is not one of the MAGIC partner schools, and the mentee in question found out about the MAGIC program from one of the past MAGIC mentees from GMS. A mentee application via the web followed, and after phone chats with the mentee and her parent, she was matched with a remote mentor in Maryland. The mentor works at the National Institute of Health (NIH).
MAGIC ran a pilot of summer mentoring this year, with three mentees participating in the pilot. Summer mentoring was on an accelerated schedule compared to the mentoring of the regular academic year, and consisted of about two months of mentoring. Two of the mentees who participated had just graduated from high school and were going on to college. They used the mentoring in the summer months to come up to speed on Java before going to college. The third mentee is a rising freshman in high school, and is continuing with her mentoring for a few weeks beyond the end of summer.
MAGIC is proud to join hands with Scientista to achieve their common goal of encouraging more girls to consider STEM careers. The Scientista Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to bridging the gaps between established professionals and pre-professional women interested in pursuing careers in the sciences. It is the largest network of university campus women in science. In their words, "Scientista is honored to partner with GetMAGIC.org, who shares our vision of encouraging women to pursue careers in STEM. We are excited to be sharing resources and opportunities with their younger members, and to continue to provide a community for alumni of GetMAGIC as they move on to college and graduate school."
The 2011-2012 MAGIC session at The Girls' Middle School (GMS) concluded this month with each of the mentees presenting some of the projects they have worked on during their mentoring sessions. Each of the two mentees plans to continue to expand on their MAGIC related activities through summer.
The 2011-2012 MAGIC sessions were kicked off at Oak Grove High School in San Jose in the second week of October, and at The Girls' Middle School (GMS) in Palo Alto a week later. Both these sessions will run through the end of the school year.
In the last week of June, this academic year's MAGIC mentoring session at Oak Grove High School concluded with an informal meeting of the mentee, her mentor and a MAGIC board member. The mentoring session at Oak Grove lasted for five months, commencing in February of this year, and consisted of one mentor-mentee pair. The mentee was a junior with a particular interest in bio-engineering, and that was the focus of the mentoring sessions. The mentor in this case was remote.
This month marked the end of this academic year's MAGIC sessions at The Girls' Middle School (GMS) and at Eastside Preparatory High School. The middle schooler mentees at GMS presented their work, in the form of slides and live demos, to an audience consisting of some of the school faculty members, their parents and grandparents, MAGIC mentors, and the MAGIC core team. For their closing meeting, the high schooler mentees at Eastside discussed their MAGIC work and suggestions for improvement of the MAGIC program at Eastside next year, with the MAGIC core team and the MAGIC faculty contacts at Eastside. Mentees from both schools worked on projects from a wide spectrum of STEM areas, including Robotics, Scratch, Android and Java programming, building websites, designing and building models using AutoCAD and SketchUp and model kits. Kudos to the mentees as well as their mentors for a very successful MAGIC program at each of these two schools!
March 8th, 2011 is the 100th. anniversary of International Women's Day. As part of its 2011 International Women's Day campaign, Google has selected a few nonprofit organizations that work with girls or women to showcase on the Google's International Women's day website. MAGIC is one of these selected organizations! MAGIC can be found under the Education tab at the bottom half of this Google campaign page . This website offers the opportunity to donate to MAGIC via Google Checkout. Through this website, Google is facilitating people all over the world to support MAGIC's work in encouraging middle and high school girls to consider careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathemetics (STEM).
MAGIC mentoring began at the fourth school for MAGIC, since its inception three years ago. The school is Oak Grove High School in San Jose. Four mentees were prescreened by the school in Decemebr 2010, and then interviewed for a single MAGIC slot. A 11th. grader was selected for this program, which will run for approximately 6 months.
MAGIC mentoring was kicked off for the second consecutive year at Eastside College Preparatory School in early November. Seven high school girls are participating as mentees in the program; five of these are juniors, and two are sophomores. Four out of the seven mentoring pairs will do face to face meetings since the mentors in question are local to the bay area, whereas the remaining three will participate in remote mentoring.
The third annual session (2010-2011) of MAGIC started at The Girls' Middle School (GMS) this month. Four spots were offered by MAGIC to the GMS girls; the four mentees consist of a sixth-grader, a seventh-grader and two eigth graders. Two of the mentors are located in the bay area, whereas the remaining two are located in the East Coast. Therefore, half of the GMS mentoring will happen remotely during this session.
Two of the GMS MAGIC mentees from the 2009-2010 MAGIC session demonstrated some of their MAGIC projects, along with their mentors, at the 2010 Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing held in Atlanta from Sept. 28 - Oct 2. The two mentor-mentee pairs, AnaSofia Wang and Pi-chuan Chang, and Julia Zaratan and Ritu Khare, presented "STEM Projects and Experiences: A MAGICal Perspective" in the GHC poster session.
The 2009-2010 session of MAGIC at Eastside College Preparatory School and at Keiller Leadership Academy concluded with each of the mentees having completed some project or projects in STEM with their mentors. The projects ranged from finding out what tools and resources it takes to make a website to how X-Rays work, in addition to finding out about various brances of engineering. For the Eastside mentees, one of the high points of their mentoring was a day trip to IBM Research Center in San Jose, where they met with several leading scientists of IBM and got demonstrations of leading edge technology that these researchers are currently working on. One of the mentees wants to participate in another year of MAGIC mentoring.
The 2009-2010 session of MAGIC at The Girls' Middle School (GMS) concluded this month. Each of the five MAGIC mentees at GMS gave a short presentation, followed by a demo, of one or more of the projects they worked on with their mentors as part of their MAGIC mentoring sessions. A non-GMS mentee (who was part of the 2nd year of MAGIC mentoring, but not through a school), also presented her work at this event. The presentations included topics such as programs in Scratch and Alice, making a webpage including details of CSS and Flash programming, programs in LEGO, Android programming, Python programming, investigative reports on the Mars rover, how gears work and other engineering topics. Each mentee did a great job of presenting her work!
The audience for this GMS MAGIC event consisted of present and past GMS MAGIC mentees, MAGIC mentors, parents of MAGIC mentees, and school officials including the GMS Head of school, Assistant Head, and the Dean of students.
MAGIC mentoring for the 2009-2010 sessions at Keiller and Eastside are going to continue through summer.
Three members of the MAGIC team - Ira Pramanick, Margot Miller and Pichuan Chang - were interviewed by Suzanne Barnett for the March 2010 edition of Community Balance broadcast on local Bay Area TV Channel KMVT 15. This show is cablecast on Comcast and ATT Uverse at 7:30 pm every Thursday in Cupertino, Los Altos, and Mountain View, CA. This interview is being aired on every Thursday of March 2010.
Three high school girls from Eastside College Preparatory School started in the MAGIC program in the latter half of February. One of the mentees is a senior, and the remaining two are sophomores at Eastside. Eastside is the first school where MAGIC is being offered to high school students. The other two MAGIC partner schools, GMS and Keiller, are both middle schools, whereas Eastside has both a middle school and a high school. Two other high schoolers have participated in MAGIC - one in the 2008-2009 session and the second one in the current session (2009-2010) - and these two mentee participations have been established through direct contact with the mentees vs through their schools.
MAGIC has been working for the past few months to expand its mentoring to a second school. The MAGIC program kicked off to a great start at this second school, with the first mentor-mentee pair meeting over the phone during the first week of December. The school is the Keiller Leadership Academy in San Diego. During this session, MAGIC mentoring is being offered to three mentees. The mentoring will run through most of the school year, ending in May 2010. The MAGIC program at Keiller is notable in that each of the mentors is going to be remote. Weekly mentoring will take place through a combination of phone calls, video chats, sharing of online docs, and emails. Some of the MAGIC mentoring at GMS has also been remote, this year and last. Remote mentoring presents many learning opportunities not only to the MAGIC core team, but also to both the mentors and the mentees.
Google Inc. Charitable Giving Fund of Tides Foundation has become our first corporate sponsor. We look forward to having more sponsors in the future.
The second MAGIC session is off to a good start at The Girls' Middle School. MAGIC mentoring is being offered to five mentees this year at GMS, these mentees being from the sixth and seventh grades. MAGIC is also going to partner with two other schools in the next few months in San Diego and in the Bay Area respectively. Please stay tuned for additional information regarding these partnerships.
Four middle-schoolers (Cassiel Moroney, Holly Nguyen, Julia Goldman and Smriti Pramanick), a MAGIC mentor (Anjalee Sujanani) and a MAGIC core team member (Foz Saeed) participated as panelists in the MAGIC panel held on October 1st at the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing. The young girls were from The Girls' Middle School (GMS) in Mountain View, CA, and represented the MAGIC mentees from the first MAGIC pilot, held at GMS. The panel was coordinated by Ira Pramanick, founder of MAGIC and a MAGIC core team member. Slides from the panel can be found at the Grace Hopper wiki site.
The panel was a great success, initiating exciting questions and comments from the large audience. Several potential partnership opportunities surfaced from panel follow-on discussions, and MAGIC is looking forward to these future collaborations.
Needless to say, the girls were the youngest (and possibly most sought after) attendees and were encouraged with several giveaways from different booths.
Third year in a row, work on MAGIC is going to be presented at the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing (GHC). This year, the format is a panel, and the topic is "MAGICal Learnings from 1-1 Mentoring of Middle School Girls". As the name suggests, the panel is about findings and experiences from the first MAGIC pilot, from the perspectives of the MAGIC team, the mentors and mentees. This pilotwas conducted at The Girls' Middle School. The panelists will include representatives of all three, and we hope to have some teachers and parents in the audience! This panel is scheduled in Session One (10:00am-11:00am) on October 1st. It is a Steering Committee Recommendation Track panel! More details about the GHC 2009 program can be found in the Conference Program Schedule. A summary report on the GMS-MAGIC pilot is available here.
MAGIC's first pilot, with the Girls' Middle School concluded at the end of May 2009. At the final MAGIC meeting of the school year, conducted at the school, each of the mentees gave a 5-10 minute presentation and/or demonstration of the work they had done with their mentors during the pilot. This included projects, reports and computer programs. The audience consisted of parents, mentors and teachers. A pilot report will be posted on this site by the end of September 2009.
MAGIC has been featured in the December 2008 IEEE Spectrum article The EE Gender Gap Is Widening In this article, Erico Guizzo discusses the underwhelming participation of women in electrical engineering. He then goes on to talk about various efforts underway to address this issue, directly or indirectly. MAGIC is mentioned as one of two programs aiming to establish a "direct and durable connection between young women and EE professionals."
MAGIC has been incorporated as a nonprofit public benefit corporation in the State of California. The name of the corporation is GetMagic Corporation. The entire NPO related process is being done by WSGR, a leading technology law firm based in Palo Alto, California, on a pro-bono basis. The MAGIC team is deeply indebted to these wonderful folks at WSGR for this service, and for their guidance and help in related matters!
MAGIC kicked off its pilot with the Girls' Middle School in October 2008. The pilot has ten mentees from sixth, seventh and eighth grades, and each mentee has been paired with a MAGIC mentor. The pilot will last through the end of the school year. MAGIC is looking forward to defining and refining its processes as a consequence of this pilot!
The MAGIC core team is conducting a BOF session on "Setting Up an Effective Organization to Support Girls" at the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing. This BOF will be held on Friday, October 3rd, from 5:10pm to 6:10pm, in Torreys Peak III. Here are the BOF slides.
The Newsweek article Revenge of the Nerdette from the June 16th, 2008 issue, cites two outreach programs aimed at encouraging girls to think about science and technology careers. MAGIC is one of them!
Second year in a row, a BOF proposal on a MAGICal topic has been accepted at the Grace Hopper Conference. The topic of the BOF is "Setting Up an Effective Organization to Support Girls". This BOF will be held on Friday, October 3rd, from 5:10pm for an hour. More information on this can be found in the Conference Program Schedule.
In the fall of 2008, MAGIC is going to partner with Girls' Middle School of Mountain View, California, to conduct a pilot of the MAGIC program. More information about Girls' Middle School can be found here. You can read all about the MAGIC pilot proposal here.
Following the project kickoff, MAGIC is undertaking the steps necessary to establish itself as a non-profit organization.
The MAGIC project was kicked off at the 2007 Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC) of Women in Computing Conference, which was held at Orlando, Florida, on October 18th., 2007.