Launch News Briefs

Scholastic & Female Leaders Debut “Rising Voices” to Inspire Girls in STEAM

The second collection in the Rising Voices Library Series Features messages from role models who inspire girls to be future leaders. 

Global children’s publishing and education company Scholastic has announced the launch of Rising Voices: Books Empowering Girls in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Math). The new library collection provides elementary school students and educators with relevant and representative books and teaching materials. 

Women make up half the United States workforce, but only a quarter of them hold science, technology, math, or engineering jobs, and the statistics are even worse for women of color. Encompassing both traditional STEM fields and artistic pursuits, Rising Voices: Books Empowering Girls in STEAM highlights girls and women from a variety of backgrounds as they solve problems, overcome obstacles, and use their unique perspectives or backgrounds to rise to the top of their fields. 

Hear from the five women of color Scholastic has teamed up with, all of whom are leaders and revolutionaries in their areas. 

A list of the mentors for the Rising Voices program: Tatyana Ali, Dr. Duriya Aziz, Estephanie Mosquera-Ortiz, Dr. Ronke Olabisi, and Dr. Oneeka Williams. Each women has a career in a science, technology, engineering, art, or math related field, and all women, except Dr. Aziz, who is Arab and wears a hijab, are Black.
Scholastic has teamed up with five women who are trailblazers in their fields for the launch of Rising Voices: Books Empowering Girls in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Math).

Tatyana Ali

 “Our duty is to meet children where their dreams begin. Instead of asking them to ‘fall back’ into categories that make us feel comfortable, let’s share with them what it looks like to ‘rise up’ into the fullness of their being.”

Estephanie Mosquera-Ortiz

“It is important to provide a safe space in which girls can see themselves as future scientists, IT experts, mathematicians, and engineers of the future—not only for them to believe that they are capable, but also to facilitate a learning environment in which success is normalized.”

Ronke Olabisi, PhD

“It is my hope that the books in Rising Voices: Books Empowering Girls in STEAM showcase a multitude of powerful real women that girls can come to know, admire, and aspire to.”

Oneeka Williams, MD

“Stories have the power to affirm, enrich, inspire, and transform, and I have seen first-hand how they can provide a spark that ignites a dream.”

Duriya Aziz, PhD

“Readers, particularly girls and those who may be located on the margins of mainstream society, may, through these stories, find their voices, and see themselves wielding influence and agency to achieve positive outcomes in their lives and in society.”

Michael Haggen, Senior Vice President of Scholastic, says”We’re excited to have incredible women at the helm of Rising Voices: Books Empowering Girls in STEAM. Each mentor is a leader and embodies the values and mission at the heart of the Rising Voices Library series. Our goal is to elevate classroom libraries through equitable instruction and books that give context to today’s world while sparking challenging, yet important discussions. All children, regardless of background or gender, will be inspired by the achievements of our STEAM mentors and the powerful stories of tenacity and innovation within this new collection.”

The collection includes 150 texts that appeal to both children and adults, including Harlem’s Little Blackbird by Renée Watson, The Flying Girl: How Aida de Acosta Learned to Soar by Margarita Engle and Shuri: A Black Panther Novel by Nic Stone. Also in the collection are a digital resource website and a teacher’s guide with implementation strategies, tips on leading a discussion, help with creating a space for difficult conversations and more.