Girls rock this summer at Stoughton High School’s Fab Lab.

“The Girls Make Electric Guitars” project, held at the lab Aug. 8-11, is an attempt to encourage female participation in STEM programming in the district, said Stoughton Area School District spokesperson Derek Spellman.

Students learned to use the software and machinery of the Fab Lab to build their own electric guitar and have some fun, but the program had a deeper context.

Spellman said the project had four important goals: reducing the “gender gap,” facilitating collaboration among students, staff and industry experts, training music educators in engineering tools and philosophy, and exposing female students to technical fields in a “cool and exciting way.”

Spellman said the district’s recent data “clearly shows” an increased number of nontraditional students in Fab Lab STEM programs at the high school.

“We know it is working,” he said. “We want to continue to accelerate this positive trend by exposing our female students to a STEM project with a lot of fun and creative energy.”

– Scott De Laruelle