By Emma Wolff
For most teenagers, high school does not include connecting with people from all over the United States to start an international science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) program for other students. But, for Tina Sindwani, a class of 2020 Deer Valley Unified School District (DVUSD) graduate, this was exactly her experience.
During her high school years, Sindwani bonded with students from all over the U.S. over their love of STEM programs. Through this experience, Sindwani and two East Coast students partnered to create The Scientific Teen in 2018.
The Scientific Teen is a nonprofit organization where students from all over the world can come together on a virtual platform to share knowledge and passion for STEM fields. The Scientific Teen has hundreds of teen contributors who produce original podcasts, YouTube series and share written articles, specifically targeting teens.
“We wanted to contribute to the STEM communication system,” says Sindwani. “There is a world of professionals speaking about their research and knowledge but contributors from our generation don’t have a similar platform. We wanted to create a program that revolves around younger voices. The goal is to help students become part of the STEM discussion and share their knowledge with other likeminded individuals.”
Any student in the world between the ages of 13-19 years old can contribute to The Scientific Teen. The prompts are left open-ended so students can submit an article about anything that interests them. They can also submit ideas for the YouTube and podcast series. Students outside the age restrictions can still participate by following becoming a Scientific Teen Ambassador.
As the director of The Scientific Teen, Sindwani oversees all new programs, organizes the finances, and is involved in community outreach. Although this keeps her busy, Sindwani is also studying computer systems engineering at Arizona State University.
“I’ve had a passion for STEM for as long as I can remember. My dad is an engineer so I discovered my love of this field at a young age,” says Sindwani. “I am so excited to be building an international program that helps other students grow in their career, meet similar people, and create a community of forward thinkers. I plan to continue working in STEM communication to widen the outreach of science programs for younger people.”
Although this last year has been hard with COVID-19, Sindwani is proud of the international growth that The Scientific Teen had and is looking forward to future developments in the program. She hopes to start in-person programs once it is safe. Ultimately, her wish is to broaden the age requirements so more students can be involved in The Scientific Teen.
For any student interested in being a contributor to The Scientific Teen, check out the “open positions” on their website at thescientificteen.org. You can also support The Scientific Teen by donating to their GoFundMe page. The money raised will help the nonprofit group reach more students and continue to grow the program. To donate, go to gf.me/u/zc9bw7. To learn more about The Scientific Teen, go to thescientificteen.org or follow their Instagram page @the.scientific.teen and their Facebook page @thescientificteen.