If Saturdays Are for The Boys… STEM Should Be for the Girls.


Sophomores Sonja Bergstrom and Joelle Yoon work on a robot for robotics. There are two female sub-captains on the robotics team with 12 girls combined. This needs to increase, as the team contains 55 members.

Annabelle Crouch, Staff Writer

I am bad at math. Or am I?

 I grew up hearing my mother complain about her struggles with math and science, though her dad was a chemist with a Ph.D. I must have subconsciously decided that STEM fields weren’t for me either.

Since I was young I have always been interested in English and shed away from science and math. My mother was an English major and had her first career as a teacher, and I have always gravitated towards English without exploring STEM first. 

And now, I never can.

We need to stop allowing girls to fall victim to the premeditated, dated opinion that girls can not hold careers in STEM.  We need more women in STEM. If that’s what you’re interested in, then you should pursue it regardless of gender. 

Women are lacking opportunity and women pursuing STEM have been frowned upon, and the consequences are apparent, even locally. According to the United States Census Bureau in 2019 only 27% of U.S. STEM workers were women. 

Samhita Donthula is a senior at Creek who snagged the role of a mechanical captain this year on the robotics team, as a returning member all four years of high school. The team did have more girls join than usual, but within the 55-person team, Donthula is only one of 12 female members.  Aspects of her robotics career have been tainted by negativity, despite her best intentions.

“Anytime we state our opinion, or try to speak up, a lot of times, it gets really shut down and not taken seriously,” Donthula said. “Even though we have more knowledge than a lot of the people there.”

Through the lens of a girl in STEM at Creek, we can see that though we may be advancing towards a more equal environment, we still have miles to go as girls are being outnumbered and put off of professional careers before we even have a fair shot. The microaggression from the boys needs to stop.

But we are on the cusp of change. 

Cherry Creek High School has been bucking the curve and going against the grain as, while national statistics show a slow increase of women in STEM, locally Creek’s female trailblazers have been rapidly getting involved. 

Science department coordinator Stephen Smith has been working for Creek for 21 years and has seen dramatic improvements. 

 “What I’ve seen is an increase in the number of females who have enrolled in honors and AP science courses,” Smith said. 

This has also been reflected professionally as over 60 percent of the Creeks science department is composed of women. The reflection of these opportunities is exciting as it is not tokenism, but the female candidates are actually better equipped for the job, and it is widely acknowledged. 

One female science teacher at Creek Christine Garcia can recall moments in her career where she experienced firsthand the disdainful remarks against women in STEM.

“When I used to teach an honors-level class, I remember a parent specifically saying to me, ‘how are you qualified to teach this?’” Garcia said. “And he said things that helped me conclude that it was about the female thing.” 

Though not perfect, Creek’s numbers show that if we consciously make the effort to encourage girls into STEM careers, the imbalance will be addressed.