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ISIS Helps Girls Make Smart Choices

UCR Program Named for Goddess of Wisdom Helps Girls Make Smart Moves

Project ISIS provides middle school girls with a taste of college while focusing on future mathematics and science careers.

(January 30, 2008)

Approximately 120 middle school girls will attend this year's campus tour sponsored by Project ISIS.Enlarge

Approximately 120 middle school girls will attend this year's campus tour sponsored by Project ISIS.

RIVERSIDE, Calif. ( — An interactive campus tour for girls interested in mathematics and science will be held at UC Riverside on Feb. 2 from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. through Project ISIS (I Strive — I Succeed), an outreach partnership program developed through UCR’s ALPHA Center.

Approximately 120 girls from De Anza Middle School and Vina Danks Middle School are expected to attend the event along with their teachers, and UCR student mentors.

During the all-day field trip, attendees will explore the UCR campus, dorms, and classrooms while hearing presentations about financial aid, preparing for college and the importance of taking mathematics and science classes. Stops along the tour include a visit to the College of Engineering and a presentation by Maria Chiara Simani, a specialist in physics education. In addition, the attendees will make a trip to an entomology class hosted by entomology graduate students.

“Our goal is to provide our middle school students with an experience that will capture their interest and enthusiasm and to look at UCR as the place they want to come to earn their degree in mathematics or science,” said Project Director Linda Braatz-Brown.

UCR students and staff from Campus Tours along with the Department of Entomology, MESA (Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement), Society of Women in Engineering and Latinos in Science will involve the girls in presentations that will illustrate how they can carve a career path in science,technology, engineering and mathematics, known as “STEM” subjects. Alliance for Education, a San Bernardino County partnership with business, labor, government, community and education, will provide transportation for the event.

Project ISIS became a reality in August 2005 when the U.S. Department of Education awarded UCR a $482,000 grant to develop a program highlighting the importance of mathematics-based careers for middle school girls. The program, which operates under UCR’s ALPHA (Academy of Learning Through Partnerships for Higher Achievement) Center umbrella, also supports efforts to increase the number of female mathematics and science majors who pursue teaching as a career.

“The program emphasizes that these students, middle school and undergraduate students can be successful in learning mathematics and science,” Braatz-Brown said. “This success opens up opportunities for them to achieve a college education and exciting career choices. It addresses a large problem our society faces in finding and placing strong mathematics and science teachers in classrooms in the Inland Empire.”

For more information on Project ISIS, contact Linda Braatz-Brown, at (951) 827-2963 or e-mail

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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