Carrie Thomas ~ Catalyst for Engagement

Carrie Thomas lectures to Expanding Your Horizons students

Providing Role Models for Girls

Expanding Your Horizons students working on a lab
Dr. Thomas enjoys an ongoing relationship with Expanding Your Horizons (EYH) a nationwide program that offers middle school girls an opportunity to explore science, math and technology and be exposed to role models, seeing women scientists doing science in a university setting. This year she presented an activity called Does Seawater Float? that explores the density of water. Students are given water samples with varying salinities and then asked to analyze sample densities.

EYH has been offered at NC State since 1993. Students come from across the state to attend the program, which is held at Science House on the NC Sate campus during Spring Break. A nominal fee of $25 per school is charged for those who wish to participate.

Expanding Your Horizons
Wins NSF Award
The Expanding Your Horizons Network was recently named recipient of the 2010 National Science Board Public Service Award as an organization that has made significant contributions and impact in public understanding of STEM. Read the NSF announcement.
The program includes a keynote speaker, usually a prominent female scientist; the 2010 speaker was Jennie Hunter-Cevera, a microbial biologist and Executive Vice President at RTI International - who also raised seven children. Being able to see female scientists at work, who also show their "human side", gives participants a close-up look at real-life careers in science. "The girls are in a safe place," says Science House Director Sharon Schulze, "and they get to see real live women doing real live STEM work."

Carrie has been involved with EYH off and on for a number of years. She participated in presentations several years ago, then was invited to be on the planning committee two years ago, and subsequently volunteered again. "Since I was already involved I needed to step up to the plate," says Carrie.