Updated: Tuesday, November 18 2014, 07:59 PM CST San Antonio 4 News

SAN ANTONIO — Inspiring future scientists is the idea behind the 4th annual STEM Expo at the Freeman Expo Hall. It’s a 2-day event designed to get inner city kids interested in science and technology.

It’s not every day you get to hang out with a rocket scientist, but more than 1,700 San Antonio middle school girls got to spend the morning with one.

“We’re planting seeds today and getting these girls to believe that they can, cuz they can,” explained rocket scientist Shayla Rivera. “Latina women are the number one group in this country opening new businesses and making a change.”

The whole idea behind this particular expo is to get these young Latinas thinking about a future in the science, technology, engineering and math field or “STEM.”

“By them being here together with girls, then they feel more comfortable to step up and say ‘Well how does this work? Oh, this is really neat,'” explained Rivera.

It’s a hands-on event where they get to see how cool a job in science could be. Raquel Seaton is a high school grad and the only girl in her group who signed up for the Toyota program. She landed a spot in the plastics department, where she learns the ins and outs of car manufacturing.

“What I like to do most is rebuild pumps so I can get the feel for how the pump works and how it functions,” Rachel told us.

Which is science. Landing a job in a STEM field may seem intimidating, but Raquel has some good advice.

“Life’s a challenge, but you’re always going to have those obstacles,” added Rachel. “And no matter what, you will overcome them. And by being successful in life, you’re going to be able to do anything you want to keep your mind on your goals in life.”

STEM Expo for kids


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