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Program Mission

To increase gender equity and inclusivity in STEM by designing and implementing a library makerspace program that provides an inclusive learning environment in which participants can thrive and feel empowered.

Women (including cis women and trans women) are in need of a community as well as safe space amongst themselves to learn as individuals invested in growing in the STEM field. 

We strive to provide a supportive community and space, devoid of damaging stereotypes, so that the program participants’ ideas are heard and highlighted rather than overlooked. We also strive to be an ally of other marginalized genders (including but not limited to non-binary, and those who are otherwise marginalized or questioning) in STEM by sharing our program resources and applying gender inclusive best practices in the design and implementation of the program.

In addition, we aim to build a pipeline for girls/women to continue pursuing studies and work in STEM from middle school to early careers. We also aim to increase program participants' confidence and interest in STEM and makerspace technologies, improve their sense of belonging in the STEM field, and better prepare them for future careers in the STEM workforce via the following program design shown on the right. 


Provide educational opportunities of makerspace technology to bridge experience gap


Connect to role models that participants can learn from and look up to


Provide opportunities to work on community projects to develop participants' confidence in solving real-world problems


Provide opportunities to teach and inspire the next generation to pursue STEM majors


Provide resources, guidance and internship opportunities for career development

Our Values

Community Oriented

We make it a top priority to actively develop relationships and seek partnerships within the University community, Charlottesville and surrounding counties to collaborate on program design and implementation, gather feedback, gain deeper understanding of community problems, and better serve the community.


Equity seeks to ensure fair treatment, equality of opportunity, and fairness in access to information and resources for all. We believe this is only possible in an environment built on respect and dignity.


Inclusivity builds a culture of belonging by actively inviting the contribution and participation of all people. We believe every person’s voice adds value, and we strive to create balance in the face of power differences. We believe that no one person can or should be called upon to represent an entire community.


Diversity is the representation of all our varied identities and differences (race, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, tribe, caste, socio-economic status, thinking and communication styles, etc.), collectively and as individuals. We seek to proactively engage, understand, and draw on a variety of perspectives. We believe that the solution to the problems we hope to address through our program can be found by affirming our similarities, as well as by finding value in our differences.


We commit to continuously improve our practices of designing and implementing the program to achieve diversity, equity and inclusivity.


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