Ann Kozak, 15, peered at a three-dimensional printed model of the female reproductive system. Learning about career options in women's health was a great experience, she said.
"It was really cool to see everything life-sized, because we all have it, but we really don't know what's really there," she said. "It was cool to see how you can be involved in science in different ways but still be a part of reproductive health for women."
Kozak was one of 11 Pittsburgh-area girls aged 13 to 17 exploring women's reproductive health at Magee Womens Research Institute on Tuesday. The seven-year-old "Tour Your Future" program is a creation of the Carnegie Science Center that aims to expose girls to STEM careers.
Three Magee researchers and professors, all women, gave presentations to the girls about their respective fields, sharing 3-D models and a suture simulation tool.
CEO Michael Annichine said Magee was eager to collaborate with the science center. It's important for women to work in the field of their gender's reproductive health, he said.
"We always need to have a diverse population at the table when we make decisions," Annichine said. "In particular, we need to have the people that we're serving at that table so we understand the impact of those decisions on them."
Earlier "Tour Your Future" explorations included forays into software engineering, forensic science and electrical engineering. Next year's schedule includes visits to the National Aviary, ALCOSAN and the Allegheny Observatory.