A unique mentoring program for girls is helping young women learn more about STEM careers, as well as leadership, etiquette, and service.

Mentoring Program for GirlsOurGEMS is a mentoring program serving young women in fourteen schools. “I was told that (OurGEMS) would be teaching you how to be a lady, and how to recognize a gentleman, and I also expect, I hope to be accepted. I haven’t had that a lot,” said Roisin Lurlay, a 13 year old homeschooler who came to hear more about the program with her mother.

OurGEMS, or Girls Empowered Through Mentoring and Service, has existed since 2008 for the purpose of uplifting, educating and empowering young women, according to president and founder Harriette Bryant.

“We want them to be successful,” Bryant said. “We want to give them resources, we want to give them connections.”

Part academic and part leadership/social experience, the program helps girls who are shy to achieve their true potential.  They are given the academic and social skills to succeed, including etiquette training so that they can handle any situation.

The success of OurGEMS has sparked an interest in starting a similar program for boys. This year, OurGents debuted at at Mountain View Middle School, Bremerton High School and Olympic High School with around 18 young men.

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