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Stratford Girl Scout Wins National Rocketry Award

September 19, 2013

 Mahlia Schneck

 Stratford Girl Scout Mahlia Schneck and her rocket. (Photo Credit: Erienne Schneck)

Stratford Girl Scout Junior Mahlia Schneck will visit the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on October 5 as a national winner in the National Reach for the Stars Rocket Competition.

This national recognition comes as a result of her first-place finish during a Girl Scout rocket launch event at Veterans Park in Bridgeport, which was funded by a generous grant from Peoples Bank. Mahlia had the closest average distance from the target in her age category, placing her first nationally in her age group.

“My experience of doing rocketry was super fun!” Mahlia said. “My favorite part was when we built the solid fuel rockets and the rocket scientist was very cool and fun. I still can't believe how fast rockets have to go to get in the air. I loved shooting the rockets off and how we got to help aim them before we fired them. I liked that we got to learn about rockets as we were building them and see they actually work. I think the rocketry program will help my future because I learned how fun science and rockets are.”

The rocket launch Mahlia participated in is a part of Girl Scouts of Connecticut’s STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) initiative. This initiative focuses on showing girls the fun of science and technology in an all-girl setting to give them the confidence they need to succeed in these crucial fields – in which girls and women are underrepresented.

“Mahlia’s success is one of many great stories of girls who experience our STEM programming,” Ellyn Savard, Program Initiatives Manager said. “While Mahlia will have the experience of a lifetime visiting Kennedy Space Center as a national award winner, she has also discovered a love for science and rocketry that will continue to grow.”

Mahlia’s mother, Erienne Schneck, credits Girl Scouts for her daughter’s success.

“I was so thrilled that my daughter, Mahlia and the other Girl Scouts were able to participate in this program,” she said. “The girls were so excited to launch their rockets on launch day and you could see how proud of themselves they were. Programs such as these instill confidence in girls and give them the opportunity to experience science in a way that might not be readily available to them.  Many thanks to Girl Scouts for providing this opportunity through their STEM programming.”

For more information about Girl Scouts of Connecticut’s STEM initiative, visit our STEM webpage.

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