Sophomores in the advanced science and engineering track at the Stella K. Abraham High School for Girls have spent the past two years exploring the world of engineering. What better way to end the school year than a trip to the Google workplace! On Thursday, April 11, together with their teacher, Mrs. Paula Berger, and SKA principal, grades 9–10, Rabbi Dr. Jeffrey Rothman, the class had the opportunity to visit the New York office of Google.
The trip proved to be the highlight of the year! The students were given a tour of the building by Mr. Raymond Blum who discussed the engineering and robotic programs he has worked on and gave the girls a sense of the “cool” culture the company is known for. “Now I see why people want to work for Google,” said Rabbi Rothman. “There is an environment of openness, collegiality, creativity, and acceptance that is contagious.”
While being treated to lunch, the students heard from four Orthodox women engineers who described what they do at Google. In addition to making engineering a real practice as opposed to just a subject in school, the women also gave the students a sense of what it is like for an Orthodox woman to work in corporate America.
The last part of the program was led by SKA parent and Google employee Dr. Joel Wein, who described the data storage services at Google. He showed the students exactly what the World Wide Web really means and how one can track each IP address in the web of computers that make up what we call the Internet. It was fascinating to hear what goes into making sure all of our Gmail accounts are backed up to ensure that we never lose our e-mail information.
The girls all agreed that they could have stayed at Google all day! It was an amazing opportunity to see the real world of engineering close up. To see practical applications of what they’ve studied for the past two years was a wonderful experience for the SKA students. Much thanks go to Dr. Joel Wein for arranging this visit and the time he and Mr. Blum spent with the girls. v