There have been several calls for attention and support for women in male-dominated fields popping up online. Now, Natalie Portman's character in the Thor film series, Jane Foster (an astrophysicist, based on the comic book character), has inspired Marvel to join the party.
The company has created the Ultimate Mentor Adventure, which invites girls ages 14 and up in grades nine through 12 to explore the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). "Through the collaborative efforts of Marvel, the National Academy of Sciences, and Underwriters Laboratories, Inc., girls will have a chance to go out into the real world and ask successful women in STEM fields about what they do, how they got where they are… and how others can follow in their footsteps," the project website reads.
The young women will have the opportunity to conduct interviews, perform experiments, participate in events and meet mentors in their hometowns (which they can do even if they don't enter the contest, thanks to a handy spreadsheet available on the website). In November, the girls will be recognized at the premiere of Marvel's Thor: The Dark World in a documentary short that is set to screen prior to the film.
What a cool and empowering opportunity. Portman's character will be part of the central plot in the new film, as Thor attempts to reunite with his ladylove while saving the Nine Realms from dark forces. It would be great to see some real-life Jane Fosters take center stage as well. The details for the contest are over here if you know a young woman who would be a perfect fit. [Spotted via io9]
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