New Steam Club helps students explore careers


Elizabeth Monroe

Steam Club engages students in activities such as creating paper airplanes.

Morgan Downing, Opinion Editor

This semester, the STEAM Club debuted at Southern Lehigh High School. Founded by juniors Grace Barr and Elizabeth Monroe, the club centers around the STEAM acronym, which stands for “science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics.” Barr and Monroe, who are interested in STEM-related careers, created the club with the idea of a fun and inclusive environment in mind.

“Both of us, being female, we acknowledged a certain stigma we would have to overcome because of how male-dominated the field is,” Barr said.

According to the United States Census Bureau, women make up nearly half of the U.S. workforce, but fill only 27% of STEM related careers. However, STEAM club is paving the way for a bright future, as 65% of the club’s members are female.

“My goal for this club is for everyone involved to learn enough about STEAM to realize what they enjoy and what they’re good at,” Monroe said. “[Teacher advisor Mr. Jonathan Piperato], Grace, and I are really looking forward to leading the club to an inclusive environment where we can teach everyone about [STEAM-related] careers through fun activities and enriching events.”

Although the club only started in early February, STEAM club has already hit the ground running with engaging activities. These activities, such as designing efficient paper airplanes using a wide range of materials, are designed to engage students in the mindset of STEAM fields. 

“When we do fun activities, the students engage with each other and contribute the most interesting ideas. Some of the students do a really good job thinking like engineers,” Barr said.

To continue building interest, the club’s future plans include hosting potential field trips and welcoming guest speakers, as well as a variety of after school activities like watching STEAM-related movies. Next school year, there will be new leadership positions including secretary and treasurer available to students.

“Not a dull moment passes by during our [meetings], which are filled with collaborative, enjoyable activities that are meant to get the wheels in your head turning,” Monroe said. “I can promise fantastic events that provide immense opportunities for students in the upcoming school year.”