Pretty Brainy empowers girls to gain STEAM - science, technology, engineering, art + design, and math - so they are equipped to develop their abilities and genius to positively impact their communities and world.
Pretty Brainy is an award-winning education nonprofit founded with the purpose of transforming how girls ages 10 to 18 regard themselves in science, technology, engineering, art + design, and math (STEAM). We began by integrating math problem-solving into girls' apparel. Knowing the value of experiential learning and critical thinking, however, in 2013 we quickly moved into creating workshops and curricula that appeal to girls' interests in service learning, philanthropy, social entrepreneurship, and design.
In 2017 Pretty Brainy and its corps of skilled volunteers brought girls more than 450 direct contact hours of learning in engineering design thinking, social entrepreneurship, and creative technology in Colorado alone. During those hours girls ages 10 to 17 received instruction and mentoring from engineers and entrepreneurs, scientists and creative professionals, technologists and teachers. This is in addition to the time and value of educators beyond Colorado who have adopted Pretty Brainy for their science clubs and classrooms in middle and high schools across the United States. In the words of one scholarship winner, "Thank you so much for letting me be part of Pretty Brainy. It is so fun and educational and is the highlight of my Saturday!"
Among our accomplishments to date, the Women's Foundation of Colorado has featured Pretty Brainy in its definitive guide, This Is What STEM Looks Like! Provided at no cost to parents, educators and care-givers, the publication delivers resources and strategies that strengthen girls' STEM experiences.
What started as the drive to keep one little girl as strong and confident at age 13 as she was at age 7 has grown into this vision: Over the next 10 years, Pretty Brainy will have empowered 2 million girls to develop their STEAM abilities and genius to positively impact their communities and world.
"Pretty Brainy helps students grow their philanthropic and entrepreneurial spirit by addressing the STEAM education challenges female students face and providing opportunities for those students to break through those barriers. Ultimately, we feel the efforts of Pretty Brainy will encourage female students to become more immersed and excited about STEAM education, which will provide the foundation and confidence for them to pursue their interests."
- Gary Rogers, former Executive Director, the OtterCares Foundation
"Pretty Brainy is awesome because you have girls who may not be as confident in science, technology, engineering and math and you're giving them an environment in which to flourish and grow and become confident in those areas."
- Consuelo Reyes, Science and Math Teacher, Alamosa High School
"The beauty of Pretty Brainy is that it opens up the world of engineering for girls. It happens in a nonthreatening way. It's not scary to them to take risks and to problem-solve and make decisions and collaborate with others to develop a product. It's a learning-centered environment."
- Christine Hendricks, Principal, Tavelli Elementary School, Fort Collins
"First of all, Pretty Brainy is really fun. I didn't actually think that it was going to be really fun because I didn't really like engineering, and my parents want me to be an engineer, and I'm like, 'No'. But this was actually really fun. I guess I had a misconception about what engineering was. Now I like engineering."
- Anoushka, 12
"This program is fantastic."
- Maria, 17
"The Pretty Brainy workshop has increased my interest in computer science. I was never really aware of how coding worked before this class and I hadn't really done any of it. I like how Pretty Brainy lets us figure out by ourselves how to use the code vs. teaching us step by step."
- Madeleine, 13
"This class has really re-sparked my interest in technology and programming."
- Esther, 16
"Please know the work your are doing matters. You are building competence and confidence in girls, and most importantly to me, you are building competence and confidence in MY girl."
- Tracey Winey, Parent & STEM Educator, Preston Middle School, Fort Collins