Kay Fizz, Gadget Whiz: A Children's Book That Defies Stigma
Samuela E. Lubin had always dreamt of becoming an engineer since she was a child. She promised herself she would achieve that goal. However, not everyone was a fan of her aspirations. Some discouraged her from turning this vision into a reality, claiming that engineering was NOT for girls.
None of these people knew the willpower Samuela had; they were not going to stop her. Samuela kept her head held high and persevered through the negativity and doubt that surrounded her and her dreams. She graduated from Florida International University and earned a bachelor's degree in biomedical engineering. That was just the beginning; Samuela took it a step further and pursued a masteral in engineering management.
Throughout her life, Samuela has always gone against the norms. These experiences inspired her to write a children's book entitled, Kay Fizz, Gadget Whiz!, an entry in the Kay Fizz Adventure series. It follows Kay Fizz, a young girl set to make the most out of her summer vacation with her friend, Sam, and her dog, Snow. They get into different, fun activities and explore how science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) affect their daily lives. Each book is designed to encourage young girls' minds to keep learning, wondering, and understanding the world around them.
"My books focus on female representation in interests and jobs people may not specifically see fit for women," Samuela said. "There are not many books out there that show little girls some sort of representation of themselves in male-dominated fields like engineering."
This is not only a stigma that Samuela feels. According to a 2019 survey conducted by the Engine research group, only 9% of girls between the ages of 13 and 17 are interested in careers in STEM. This is even lower than the 11% from a similar survey conducted a year before.
Jack Kosakowski, president and CEO of Junior Advancement USA, said, "One element that may need to be emphasized more is ensuring that STEM professionals are serving as role models and working with girls in educational settings as part of these initiatives."
This is exactly what Samuela E. Lubin wants to achieve with her Kay Fizz book series; she wants to put an end to the stigma that STEM fields are only for men.
"I want to inspire more little girls to believe in themselves and chase after their dreams of pursuing careers in STEM fields," Samuela said. "Girls can do anything and be whoever they want to be, and I think Kay Fizz can guide them through that journey."
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