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It’s International Women’s Day, and as part of our celebrations, Horizon Educational is pleased to showcase the experiences of women and girls who are taking part in our Horizon Hydrogen Grand Prix program.

The first International Women’s Day was held on February 28, 1909, in New York City – and was organized by the Socialist Party of America. Since then, it’s expanded around the world, becoming an official UN global holiday in 1975.

Despite the progress on gender equality over the last 50 years, women are still significantly underrepresented in STEM fields and careers globally. 

Two of our students from the Waldorf School in Orange County, California spoke with us about the impact the Horizon Hydrogen Grand Prix (H2GP) program had on them as women in STEM.

Hannah Lieberman, a final year student the Waldorf School Orange County, gave us her thoughts on the challenges women face in education:

“I think that women have been historically barred from so many male-dominated and guarded institutions, practices, and ideas, and on top of that, socialized to be self-recriminating, this happens a lot. It’s painful — this idea that we are already too late, and so we cannot begin, it’s damaging. Women are so often told they are not good enough, that I think we can’t shy away from looking foolish while we make progress, and while we teach ourselves to inhabit spaces where we were never invited to be”.

“I think everyone should enter the world with a sense of open bewilderment or curiosity, instead of chastising themselves by saying, ‘why don’t I already know this?’

“I think that H2GP demonstrates in a microcosm how our generation is changing things! I think the program is providing a space for our ideas of gender equity to actually play out, through a group of young people who largely aren’t there to do anything but engage with something they’re passionate about. That’s exactly as it should be!”

Elena Roussanova, a fellow senior at Waldorf School Orange County, shares Hannah’s enthusiasm for the H2GP.

“I think it's really helpful to have that sort of hands-on design experience – we have to design the car, then we have to build the car, see if the car works and find solutions when the car doesn’t work.”

Last year the UN theme for International Women's Day was “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow”. Horizon Educational is proud to further the work of women in STEM – highlighting the contributions of women and girls around the globe who are working to create a sustainable future for all.

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