Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts Supports Flying Cloud Institute

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GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — Flying Cloud Institute (FCI) announced funding from the Women's Fund of Western Massachusetts to support its Young Women in Science program in Southern Berkshire County and Pittsfield.
 
For over twenty years, FCI has offered Young Women in Science (YWIS) programs free of charge to underserved female-identified youth in Berkshire County in the form of after school Girls Science Clubs, youth mentorship programs, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Summer workshops, and conferences for Women in STEM. 
 
"Coming out of this pandemic year, there has never been a more important time to engage our youth in empowering, hands-on investigations with authentic role models in order to build up their identities as capable, curious learners and to inspire the next generation of STEM leaders," said Executive Director Maria Rundle.
 
The programs focus on girls who might have an inclination for STEM but find little encouragement and little to no opportunity to interact with women STEM professionals who would serve as role models— all while facing the social stigma that girls are not good at STEM.
 
The societal barriers for women and girls in STEM have been persistent, especially for minority women and in the fields of engineering, mathematics, and physics. FCI's program is built on the body of knowledge derived from research, using the strategies of mentorship, hands-on engagement, and intentional identity-building practices to create a pathway for girls from grade 3 to 12 that offers continual support and opportunities for leadership. These programs are life-changing and open doors to economic independence in lucrative careers as well as building up the voices of our future female leaders.
 
One graduate noted that because of her participation in YWIS from a young age, she never even considered that science wasn't for her and that by the time she got to college and found she was the only woman in her engineering class, "It was too late to be afraid because I already knew I belonged there."
 

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Festival Latino of the Berkshires

GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — The Festival Latino of the Berkshires is celebrating its 25th anniversary on Saturday, Sept.  25 from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
 
The even will be held rain or shine, at Green Park (behind the Town Hall) and Saint James Place on Main Street in Great Barrington. 
 
There will be Latin American folkloric dance companies and live music performances, language, dance, and cultural education activities, artisans, and a variety of Latin cuisine vendors. The Festival Latino of the Berkshires has been known for its high-quality performances and community spirit. 
 
The event is free of charge, alcohol-free, and open to the public. 
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