If you weren't able to join us this year, we have suggestions for other STEM activities here.

Girl workshops

Our 2019 conference took place on March 9, 2019 and was a huge success, thanks to our wonderful workshop leaders, sponsors, volunteers, and first and foremost girls, parents, and teachers who attended! Thank you to all who contributed to this year's conference. Please check back in the fall for information about next year's conference!

2018 Workshops
All Creatures Great and Small
This workshop will introduce students to a career in veterinary medicine. Students will learn about the diverse opportunities available in the field of veterinary medicine by speaking with veterinary students and engaging in hands­-on activities.

ANT-mazing: How females rule the social insect world
Ants are everywhere! Have you ever wondered how ants "talk" to each other? Come learn how their cooperation and communication has lead to world domination. In this workshop we will have live ants and learn what it is like to be an ant in a colony.

Antibacterial Treasure Hunt
Like to find treasure? Learn about how diverse scientific and technical skills are employed in the pharmaceutical industry to discover new antibiotics. We will have hands-on activities and demonstrations of equipment used to discover these "treasures".

Build your own animated games, stories, art and puzzles!
Have you ever been in awe of the beautifully animated characters in Disney movies and video games? Do you want to create your own animated characters, build stories or games using them? Or maybe you are not the story-telling type but want to build cool art or puzzles that are animated - whatever your interest is, in this workshop you will create your own animations and show them off to your friends and family!

Cancer-fighting super-hero mutants
Discover how scientists are genetically-engineering immune cells into "mutant" super-heroes with the power to kill cancers! We will learn how this cutting edge technology is changing medicine and saving lives, and build models from simple materials to illustrate the action.

Circuits, Magnets, Motors and More
Get hands on with Science! Forget abstract and complex principals. Learn how everyday items can unlock these mysteries. You’ll get hands on and have a project or two to take home and share.

Dive into Coral Reefs
Coral reefs are beautiful, but did you know that they also support 25% of life in the oceans??? Come dive into this learning experience - in this workshop, we'll use a series of hands-on activities to learn fascinating facts about coral reefs, their global importance, and how they're currently being challenged by climate change. We'll also explore ways that you can help protect their future!

Driving Change
You walk into your room and turn on the light. How does energy get to your outlet? Can this energy be used to get you from home to New York? This workshop will use mini solar cars to demonstrate how some of our energy-dependent world works. Come gain a global perspective and maybe get your hands dirty at this session hosted by female engineers from Tesla Motors.

Driving the Future: How Computers See the World
Learn how images are processed so that self-driving cars and other robots can understand the world around them! We'll discuss several modern algorithms used for computer vision with fun, interactive examples. By the end, you will apply these techniques to see how a self-driving car finds lanes on the road!

Enzymes in Action!
Enzymes are proteins that catalyze biochemical reactions. They are found in all living things, including you! Learn about how enzymes do their jobs to control and speed up reactions. In this workshop you will use your hands to mimic how they work, and get to see real enzymes in action!

Food engineering
Food? Engineering? WHAT?! Did you know that there is a whole bunch of science and engineering involved in food production from harvesting, preserving to delivering? In addition to learning about the science of food we eat daily, we will be making, packaging (and eating) s’mores to demonstrate engineers’ role in storing and delivery of your food.

Genome Detectives
This workshop will be an introduction to basic computational biology, genetics and evolutionary biology. Girls will use the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI)'s online BLAST tool to identify mystery genes. Girls will then discuss what they found out about the mystery genes in the context of evolutionary relationships and inheritance.

Happy, Healthy Animals
Do animals need the same things that we need to survive? Can they get bored just like us? Design and construct an enrichment project for one of Oakland Zoo’s education program animals. Learn how we make the lives of Zoo animals more enriching and fun, and how you can do the same for your pets and native wildlife!

Illustrating Science
Sometimes a drawing is just what you need to tell a story or describe something that you've seen, and it's a great way to learn too! Come find out why we need science illustrators, and try out some drawing techniques you can use to create your own science sketchbook!

Laser technology in cell phones
A lot of laser processes are crucial to making a cell phone whether it is the display, the engravings, the electronics... lasers are required at every step. We will learn and experiment with lasers re creating processes used to make a cell phone.

Let's go batty!
The goal of this workshop will be to introduce bat ecology and the basics of sound analysis. I will give a short introduction into the basics of sound, visualization of sound and sound analysis. With these tools at hand participants will be able to identify bat species based on their analysis of different bat calls. Furthermore, participants will have the possibility to record their own voices and conduct a similar analysis on these recordings.

Let's make Ranch!
Ever wonder how products like Hidden Valley Ranch, Burt's Bees chapsticks, or Kingsford Charcoal are made and end up in your home? Join us for a workshop where you learn to be the product, packaging, and process engineer for some of these household products!

Making Artificial Arms and Legs
Come learn how to make devices that improve peoples mobility. Get hands on experience with the materials and technology we use every day to build artificial legs and braces to support different parts of the body.

Making Music (with math!)
Ever wanted to write a song but didn't know how to start? Ever wondered how a computer can write music? We'll use math to explore how musical notes relate to one another & why some tones sound better together than others. Then you'll use that knowledge to compose a short piece of music. Previous knowledge of music/ability to read music not needed! (:

Ocean Explorations

Have you ever wondered how the ocean works? What drives it and how it's going to change with the recent changes in climate? Covering 70% of the Earth's surface, oceans still remain quite a mystery! Come join me for a fun, hands-on info session on the wondrous Ocean and it's workings.

Playing with Fire
Live fire demos! Learn what being a wildland fire scientist is like and get answers to questions like: How do wildfires burn? Are they good or bad? You may be surprised by the things fire can do!

Regrowing limbs: Science fiction or science?
Find out how science and engineering work together to save lives and improve human health. Play a game to learn how stem cells can become any cell in our body and make a biogel that scientists could use to regenerate tissues.

Rocketing to Space
Have you ever wanted to launch something into space? In this workshop you will learn how to be a rocket scientist. Be ready to put your skills to the test!

Salmon Sleuths: Using Tech to Track Fish Migrations
Learn how fish biologists use technology to uncover the secret world of salmon, and come tag some squishable “fish”! Every year, adult salmon make an incredible journey from the ocean to lay their eggs in rivers throughout California, then baby salmon hatch and make their way back to the Pacific Ocean. Together we’ll learn how to identify species and count migrating adult salmon using infrared scanners, and how to estimate the population size of migrating baby salmon using microchips – it'll be o-fish-ally fabulous!

Secret Signals, Codes and More
Ever felt like there was more going on in the world around you than you could understand? Ever felt like there were secret codes and signals that people were using, and that you were missing? Well, this workshop won't help you understand all of it, but we will show you how to send coded messages to your friends! Come and learn about the secrets of the internet and you will even get to make a super cool bracelet!

Spacecraft Structures
Have you ever wondered what it takes to send a rocket to space, or the engineering behind it? In this lesson, step into the shoes of an engineer, learn about critical systems on a spacecraft, and send a rocket into orbit! Do you have what it takes?

Star Wars Videogame
Work with Rey and Princess Leia to program your own Star Wars video game with sound effects, personalized scoring, characters and game-play. Your JavaScript game can be shared with friends and played on your phone or online. This workshop uses resources freely available at code.org

The Art and Science of Data Visualization!
We will dive deep into data and learn how to make stunning and useful data visualizations using Tableau Software! Charts of numbers - where insight is hard to find - are transformed into intuitive and interactive visualizations that are easy to explore and make important discoveries. Come learn how to use Tableau and what a day in the life of a Data Scientist is like!

The Building Blocks of Life
Cells are kind of like Legos - both are building blocks. But while Legos are used to make things like castles and spaceships, cells make up living things. Let's explore the basic parts of a cell and how they help you function everyday!

There's Something in the Water...
Millions of gallons of water are consumed every day. How do we know our water is safe to drink, and how do we make sure it's clean? Come design and test filters for cleaning water and learn how environmental engineers make sure your water is safe to drink!

Uncovering the Past: Following the Fossil Trail
From dinosaurs to trilobites, fossils show the wild and wide diversity of organisms that have lived on Earth in the past. Come learn about how fossils are made and get up close and personal with some yourself. You'll also get to make a fossil of your own and try out being a paleontologist by searching for and identifying real fossils.

What's the BUZZ about BEES?

Did you know that chocolate needs flies and berries need bees for their delicious flavors? Come explore the world of insects and how they bring food to our plates with a few female entomologists (scientists who study insects) from UC Berkeley! After learning some techniques to catch, preserve, identify and study insects, you'll be in for a treat when you sample some of the foods that need pollinators. We'll also reveal how flies make chocolate and bees make berries so delicious! (Hint: The flies are not in the chocolate.)