STEMinist | Philanthropist | Activist | Change Agent
Azaria has always loved STEM. During her elementary school years, her love for STEM was fostered by her family, teachers and classmates. She was encouraged to be herself and taught that education was extremely important. During her 5th grade year, she decided to apply for a specialty middle school program. Upon being accepted into the program, she realized that she’d be leaving the school that she had previously attended for 6 years. Yet, she was eager to move onto a new adventure.
Middle school was tough. Transitioning from a Non-Title 1 to a Title 1 school was even tougher. One of the first downfalls noticed was that the STEM opportunities that were once plentiful were now almost non-existent. The Middle School Magnet program allowed Azaria to earn High School Credits earlier than most. Science classes were always her favorites. Her teacher, Mr. Baez, reminded her of her old school and the teachers that taught there. He encouraged his students to be nerdy and his teaching techniques set him apart from the rest. Yet, Azaria still found herself longing for peers who looked like her and had the same interests as her. One day while in school, Azaria was told that “black girls don’t like science”. Those words stung. She tried forcing herself to dislike something that she had loved for many years prior. However, STEM was a part of who she was and she knew that she did not want those same words to effect other young girls the way that they had hurt her.
That summer, she attended a summer camp. Envision Lead Grow allowed Azaria to place all of her dreams and visions onto paper. That week, her vision became a reality and ZincGirlz was formed.
ZincGirlz allows inner-city girls to explore STEM through various enrichment activities and experiments. In addition to learning about STEM girls are also encouraged to love themselves, obtain higher education, and engage in community service projects.
Outside of ZincGirlz, Azaria is a 14-year-old sophomore at Maury High School. She participates in several different sports and extracurricular activities. Currently she serves as her schools SCA and the Norfolk Youth NAACP Vice President. Azaria strongly believes in equal human fundamental rights. In addition, she spends countless hours volunteering at various organizations. Recently, she has begun a new role and slowly making her way into the public speaking world. We’re certain she’ll be a pro in now time.
Be on the look out to see her next move!