When Mary Thony was a little girl, she didn’t think it was possible for women to advance in STEAM related fields because she rarely saw them in those positions, she said.
Today, as the Verona office lead at Navigant, a global consulting company, Thony organizes the annual STEAM Fair to expose young girls and all children to science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics (STEAM).
“(STEAM) is something girls can do too, it is not a male dominated field like it use to be,” Thony said.
Geared for ages 5 to 10, the Navigant Steam Fair will be held from 9:30 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Verona Public Library, 500 Silent St.
There are more than 10 STEAM stations around the library. Children can participate in hands-on activities such as building a toothpick tower, extracting DNA from strawberries, assembling an LED flashlight and MG&E’s Power Pedal bike.
In addition to sparking interest in STEAM activities, the fair is a fundraising competition, Thony said. Since 2013, organizers donated $20,000 to the Friends of Verona Public Library.
The Navigant STEAM Fair is part of a larger initiative by Navigant called Community Connections, Thony said. Every year, the company encourages people at offices around the world to give back to the community in some way; volunteer at food pantries, adopt a highway, or support a cancer walk.
Once Community Connections is over, a poll is open to the public to vote on the best service activity, for which the company will donate cash to the area organization.
The Verona office has won four times since 2013, donating $5,000 for each win.
The link to vote for the event will be available on the Verona Public Library’s website.