Why Don’t More Girls Become Engineers: Dumb Toys

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GoldieBlox lights up the internet with an awesome commercial offering a fun alternative to the endless stream of pink princess toys for girls.

By Jessica Stillman (Editor, Women 2.0)

What stops more women from getting interested in STEM careers? It’s certainly not ability, so maybe it’s how colleges teach computer science, or stereotypes of femininity in high school, or lack of media role models before that. Or maybe it goes back even further.

Maybe it’s all those uniformly pink and sparkly toys that little girls receive that teach them critical life skills such as baking cupcakes, dreaming about handsome princes (and/or ponies), and obsessing over their body image.

That’s the diagnosis of female-founded toy company GoldieBlox, which released a commercial rewriting the Beastie Boys to make a point that better, less boring toys are a good starting point for encouraging more young women into science and tech. The company, started by Stanford grad Debbie Sterling, makes interactive toys designed to inspire the next generation of engineers.

As Slate says it “is a stupendously awesome commercial” that “subverts a bunch of dumb gender stereotypes—all to the strains of a repurposed Beastie Boys song,” or as Upworthy succinctly describes the action in the video, “If 3 Little Girls Did This To My House, I'd Do Everything I Could To Get Them Full Rides To Stanford.” It’s already received more than 3 million hits. Sweet!

Check out the video below (absolutely guaranteed to make you smile). Want the complete lyrics? Business Inside has you covered. Finally, if you like what you see, you can vote for GoldieBlox to win a chance to advertise during the SuperBowl.

How awesome was that!?

Jessica Stillman (@entrylevelrebel) is an editor at Women 2.0 and a freelance writer with interests in unconventional career paths, generational differences, and the future of work. She writes a daily column for Inc.com, contributes regularly to Forbes and has blogged for CBS MoneyWatch, GigaOM and Brazen Careerist, among others.