Of the many influences on children and their careers, one of my favorites is involvement in outside clubs and organizations. From my years in admissions, I know that participation in the scouts or 4-H can have a positive impact on the person’s development and skills.
I was excited to read that the Girl Scouts have added 23 new badges in the STEM and outdoor areas. Young girls’ involvement in these programs now could lead to either a new career path or at least to personal awareness and care in different areas.
The Girl Scouts have a wide variety of badges for girls to earn. You can see the whole list here, but it includes things like product designer, home scientist, philanthropist, business owner, digital movie maker, woodworker, game visionary, learning the science of style, public policy, mechanical engineering, netiquette and website designer — many things that girls would not have exposure to if not for their involvement in Scouts.
Whether in a formal program like the badge-earning Girl Scouts or in a more informal way (such as allowances for any personal development or training class), your organization will benefit from encouraging your employees to explore new areas and to learn things beyond their normal job duties. How can you make it exciting to pick up new skills or to dabble in an adjacent field? Even if a peripheral understanding is the outcome and not interest or mastery, it still is a badge of honor to be a continual learner.