The Sky’s The Limit!

Reaching Higher benefits at-risk students

   “I love STEM!” said Hailie, a student in Highfields’ after-school program, Reaching Higher.

   Do you know what STEM stands for? If not, you’re not alone. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. It’s also one of Hailie’s favorite enrichment activities.

   Enrichment activities are a big part of Reaching Higher. Aside from reinforcing academics and offering homework help, Reaching Higher devotes a large amount of time for fun! These activities help increase students’ self-esteem, enhance communication skills, and relieve stress. (It’s usually their favorite part of the day!)

   The STEM activities teach students how to build structures like buildings, tables and cubes using different objects. Most of the activities are hands-on and designed to help students work together as a team to create new ideas.

   “I had never heard of STEM before Reaching Higher, but now I’m really interested in it,” said Hailie. “I even like to go home and build things with my family.”

   The enrichment activities change every two weeks. This year, students have learned how to paint using charcoal and pastel, survive in the wilderness, exercise, and cook healthy food.

   “Reaching Higher has given me a lot of opportunities to try new things and I’m grateful to be a part of it!” said Hailie.  

   Although women fill close to half of all jobs in the U.S. economy, they hold only 26 percent of STEM jobs according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics. Thankfully, there are several organizations encouraging young women to study STEM and many offer scholarships for women studying for a STEM undergraduate degree.


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