My name is Maiya McCrary and this my STEM blog for my Girl Scout Gold Award Project: “Gear Up: STEM Into Your Future”.

I have always wanted to work with computers and video games, and give back by teaching children, especially those in minority communities, the benefits of pursuing STEM careers. My older brother, who introduced me to computers and gaming, was always willing to help others, and has been my inspiration for extensive community service. These factors, including my love of mathematics, have determined my path to pursue a career in computer software engineering.

My experience as a robotics programmer with the National Society of Black Engineers, programming code in Python on a Raspberry Pi at Rackspace, and my engineering studies at the Design and Technology Academy have enhanced my problem-solving techniques, skills, mentoring experience, and have prepared me academically. My Girl Scout Gold Award platform, “GEAR UP: STEM Into Your Future”, has leadership skills expansion, community involvement, teaching and demonstrating the benefits, opportunities, knowledge, and encouragement to young students to reach their fullest potential.

With tremendously positive participation by the K through 8th Sunday School classes during my STEM workshops, we’ve completed STEM activities, a Robot Collage, and will offer new STEM concepts and educational opportunities online. The Eastside and Westside Boy’s and Girl’s Clubs have established STEM labs and Robotics teams teaching STEM principles, lessons, projects and robotics activities. As a volunteer and assistant robotics coach, the Eastside team won First Place in their first competition.

My immediate personal goals are to obtain my undergraduate degrees in Computer Software Engineering and Mathematics to guide me toward employment with companies like Rackspace or Google, and studying abroad. I aim to expand my knowledge of the Japanese language and culture to open avenues for STEM-related educational and professional training in foreign lands. I too aspire to attain a Masters degree in graphic design and animation, and as a doctoral candidate, with hard work, strong familial support. I pray for a fulfilled life and career, and most importantly, trusting God as my guide, I believe there is nothing that I can’t achieve or accomplish.