By Jon Reisfeld for All Together, the blog of the Society of Women Engineers.
Recently, the Ad Council took a big step toward making middle schools the future breeding ground for new generations of women leaders in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). It launched “She Can STEM” — an ambitious, new public service campaign to make STEM cool and inspiring to girls.
In the process, the Ad Council abandoned the single-client business model that it had used for nearly three-quarters of a century to produce and distribute such iconic, game-changing campaigns as Smokey Bear, which helped the National Park Service reduce annual acres lost to wildfires from 22 million in 1944, to 8.5 million in 2000. Its famous “A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste” campaign for the United Negro College Fund is another example. That effort helped raise $2.2 billion dollars to pay for more than 400,000 minority student college educations.
For “She Can STEM,” the Ad Council replaced that tried-and-true model with something completely new: a broad-based coalition of partners led, in this instance, by such top global tech brands as GE, Google, IBM, Microsoft, and Verizon.