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Young Women Learn about Careers in STEM

Careers in STEM
Students participated in a forensic murder
mystery during a Young Women in
STEM workshop.

On October 22, Neumann’s Science and Mathematics Department hosted a Young Women in STEM workshop for 30 students and four teachers from two private academies and one diocesan high school.


According to Dr. Sylvia Riviello, an associate professor of chemistry who coordinated the event, “The purpose of the workshop was to introduce these young women to the possibilities of careers in STEM.” 


The day began with a panel discussion that featured four speakers with varied careers: Dr. Radha Railcar, a biostatistician who works for Merck & Co.; Dr. Jennifer Stewart, a research scientist from the University of Delaware; Dr. Elizabeth Singewald, a chemistry adjunct who previously worked at DuPont; and Tiffany Connelly, a Neumann alumna who works as an analytical scientist for QS Pharma. The women spoke for approximately 20 minutes and explained their professional journey.  The students were so engaged with the panel that the segment lasted two hours, a full 60 minutes beyond the anticipated time.


Dr. Riviello then put the students to work, assigning a forensic activity called "Who Murdered the Mayor?"  The students became CSI investigators -- looking at tire tracks, making blood samples and fingerprints, and measuring larvae for estimated time of death. 


At lunch, several of the university science and math faculty joined the students and the teachers from the schools.  The day ended with guided tours of the campus. 

The schools who participated were Gwynedd Mercy Academy, Merion Mercy Academy and St. Elizabeth High School in Delaware. Most of the 30 students were in 11th grade.



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