University of Houston Cullen College of Engineering


PHOTOS: G.R.A.D.E. Camp Introduces Houston’s Young Women to the World of Engineering


Natalie Thayer

In an effort to address the critical shortage of women in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields, the UH Cullen College of Engineering hosts G.R.A.D.E. (Girls Reaching and Demonstrating Excellence) Camps each summer to introduce female high school and middle school students to the field of engineering.

Fritz Claydon, director of the Division of Undergraduate Programs and Student Success at the Cullen College and camp co-coordinator, said that G.R.A.D.E. Camp plays an important role in broadening female students’ horizons.

“The camps inform young ladies about career paths they might not know exist for them,” he said.

The week-long camp introduces campers in grades 8-12 to fundamental engineering principles through dynamic, hands-on activities. For example, campers learn to build different types of robots through lab demonstrations on motors, generators and sensors.

Undergraduate students from the Cullen College serve as camp mentors, guiding G.R.A.D.E. campers through the engineering challenges and answering questions about life as a UH engineering student.

This year, the Cullen College hosted two G.R.A.D.E. Camp sessions; the first took place from June 13-17 and the second took place from June 20-24.

View photos from G.R.A.D.E. Camp here!