Girls in Science

Hands-on science for middle and high school girls

Designed to inspire the next generation of researchers and engineers, Girls in Science connects elementary, middle, and high school girls with female scientists from the Burke Museum and the University of Washington. These programs aim to offer real-world experiences in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) to girls who may not otherwise have access to these opportunities. 

Girls in Science Technology participants

High school participants in the Girls in Science Technology program learn coding language during "Hour of Code" in December 2015.
Photo: Burke Museum

A girl preps a leaf in order to take a closer look under a microscope

A girl preps a leaf in order to take a closer look under a microscope.
Photo: Burke Museum

Microscope and painted nails

The program is designed to build confidence in middle school girls at an age when participation in STEM subjects often drops.
Photo: Richard Brown Photography

Girls in Science at coast

The applied science of Girls in Science happens both in the Burke's labs and outside.
Photo: Lora Shinn

Burke scientists teaching Girls in Science participants

Dr. Caroline Strömberg, the Burke’s curator of paleobotany, assists Girls in Science participants.
Photo: Richard Brown Photography

Middle School Program

The Middle School Girls in Science program provides a collaborative and supportive environment for girls in grades 6–8 to explore a variety of STEM fields such as oceanography, neuroscience, biology and spectroscopy. Participants meet one Saturday each month to learn from female scientists at the Burke Museum and the University of Washington. Together, they conduct experiments with plants, learn to measure light, examine zooplankton under a microscope, discover how the brain works, and more! 

Ages: Grades 6–8

Session Dates: One Saturday per month from 9 am - 12 pm during the 2016-2017 school year: October 15, November 19, December 10, January 14, February 25, March 18, April 22, May 13. 

Cost: FREE 

Apply: Applications are now closed for the 2016-2017 school year. 


High School Program

The High School Girls in Science program gives girls in grades 9–12 the opportunity to be a part of the groundbreaking research being performed everyday by Burke Museum scientists. Participants in this quarterly program meet afterschool on six Mondays to take an in-depth look at a particular field of study at the Burke. Girls will explore what the Burke’s vast research collections can tell us about our past, present and future! 

Ages: Grades 9–12

Cost: FREE (bus passes available upon request)

Session Dates: Mondays from 4–6 pm for six sessions each quarter. Participants may apply for fall, winter, and/or spring quarter.

  • Fall: Malacology with Dr. Melissa Frey, Invertebrate Zoology Collections Manager (applications for fall quarter are now closed).
  • Winter: Paleobotany with Dr. Caroline Strömberg, Curator of Paleobotany (applications for winter quarter are now closed).
  • Spring: Ichthyology with Katherine Maslenikov, Ichthyology Collections Manager. Mondays from 4-6 pm:  4/17, 4/24, 5/1, 5/8, 5/15, 5/22.  DEADLINE EXTENDED: Please submit your application for spring quarter by March 31, 2017.
Summer Camp Program

In July of each year, the Burke Museum holds a weeklong summer camp for girls entering grades 5–7 to explore hands-on science with Burke Museum and University of Washington female scientists. Visit our Camps page to learn more!


For More Info

Burke Education
Phone: 206.543.5591

Program Supporters

The development of Girls in Science is in part supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. EAR-1253713. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed here are those of the Burke and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

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