Youth Challenge Program Cadets Participate in STEM Projects to Serve the Community

According to the U.S. Chamber Foundation, there is a significant shortage in STEM labor, especially for women.

ABC 31 News Reporter Keisha Swafford has the story on how the Youth Challenge Program exposes youth to STEM education.


Learning robotics gives cadets hands-on experience in the STEM field.

Cadet Lesley Carbajal says, “At YCP, they taught us one of the skills is communication skills, which is working together and we’re able to put that here in STEM, we’re able to put that together because we learn that and also putting the parts together. It just amazes me how the robots, how the robotics work.”


Cadets work together to make the robots move.

Region 6 CENLA STEM Director Jennifer DePriest says, “What’s really exciting is we’re getting to work with young girls to introduce them to STEM that could literally change their lives. Robotics is used in various industries and so it’s really a fun activity and skill to show them how engineering, programming, team building all can come together for careers later.”


Through STEM, they learn to depend on each other to finish the project.

Cadet Lesley Carbajal says, “I love that I get to work with my team, with my peers, and also, I get to learn a little bit about what I want to pursue in my career. It shows a little bit how I want to pursue in nursing.”


YCP teaches cadets to use their hands to build into the community.

Cadet Samriya Clayton says, “We built a playground for disabled kids. We had different ideas from each team, we had four members in each team. It was different ideas from each four members, and we learned how to maneuver and compromise with our ideas and to finish the project.”


YCP’s goal is to give cadets valuable skills for future careers.

Next year, YCP will include more STEM education into their program.

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