Melissa Covarrubia

International Day of Women and Girls in Science, established in December 2015, supports equal access and participation for women and girls in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). It is a day for uniting communities toward equitable advancement, and a day where innovation inspires future generations to pursue a career in STEM.

Melissa Covarrubia, educator at Las Palmas Leadership School for Girls, sought to honor International Day of Women and Girls in Science by celebrating an on-site STEM camp and also by attending a STEM event at the University of Texas at Austin, presented by Women in STEM (WiSTEM). Thanks to Power of the Dollar® members, she was awarded a $1,000 grant in December 2022 for her “International Day of Women and Girls in Science at Las Palmas Leadership School for Girls” project, and she was able to both witness her STEM camp become a reality and make the trip to Austin the following day (February 11)!

stem covarrubia

Students building cars in STEM camp

“It was amazing, and we had a lot of fun both days,” said Covarrubia. “Here [at the school], everybody participated in some way shape or form with the STEM activities. It was good because they started activities here and then the kids who did get to go to the University, it was a good extension activity for sure.”

With the assistance of 1st-Gen Scholars, a nonprofit organization in San Antonio supporting students in STEM, an array of school employees, and more, students were introduced to educational activities aimed to help plan for their future, while also having loads of fun enjoying the experience from drawing designs to building helicopters at their on-site STEM camp. Students continued learning at their trip to the university where STEM activities allowed them to experience much of what the field has to offer, could do a little chemistry, take in sessions taught by engineers, and more!

“From our hearts, just the fact we get to see all that take place, and because with the funds we were able to make something like that experience happen,” said Monica Muñoz, Head of Schools at Las Palmas Leadership School for Girls. “It doesn’t always happen for kids and so we’re really, really appreciative of that!”

Looking to help local schools, invest in your community, and support educators like Melissa Covarrubia? Make a tangible, positive impact by joining the collective giving of our Power of the Dollar® membership. Learn more at, and together, we can create pathways that lead to better lives and stronger communities.