Third annual Women in Science Conference to be held at BHSU

The Black Hills State University Women in Science Group will hold its third annual Women in Science Conference at BHSU in Spearfish Wednesday, May 11.

Women in Science is a one-day workshop designed to provide middle school girls with engaging opportunities to learn about topics from the diverse fields of science, technology, engineering, and math. Attendees will be exposed to career fields including medicine, pharmacy, underground science, chemistry, genetics, math, information technology, engineering, physical therapy, geology, hydrology, biotechnology, and solar energy.

Dr. Katrina Jensen, director of the conference and associate professor of chemistry at BHSU, said students attending the conference will be introduced to role models who have exciting careers in STEM.

“We hope the students are inspired by their success stories and are motivated to work hard to pursue their own goals,” said Jensen. “We recruited women from diverse fields to present at the conference, and many of the students will learn about careers they may not have known about before coming to campus.”

Students attending the conference will be able to interact with speakers individually during sessions throughout the day and engage in hands-on activities during breakout sessions and in the exhibit hall. Activities include working with medical equipment, learning computer programming, interacting with a flood model, and a planetarium.

It is anticipated that 700 middle school students and their teachers will attend the conference from 15 schools. South Dakota middle schools attending include Belle Fourche, Cheyenne – Eagle Butte, Harding County, Lead-Deadwood, Mead County, Our Lady of Lourdes in Porcupine, Red Cloud, Spearfish, Stagebarn in Summerset, and Sturgis. Wyoming middle schools attending are Hulett, Moorcroft, Newcastle, Sundance, and Upton.

Jensen said this is a great opportunity for students to visit a college campus and get a feel for what college is like. During the conference, students will attend sessions in different buildings across campus and have lunch in the Hive cafeteria.

 “The students will also visit our science labs at BHSU and meet scientists who work right here on campus,” said Jensen.

For information about the conference, please visit the website at For more information or questions, please contact Dr. Katrina Jensen at 605-642-6247 or

The conference is free to students and is supported by generous contributions from the following sponsors:  Black Hills State University, Coeur Wharf Sustainability Fund, Sanford Underground Research Facility, Caterpillar, Monument Health, South Dakota Space Grant Consortium, SRAM, Solitario Zinc Corp, AAUW of South Dakota, Zonta Club of Spearfish Area, Energy Laboratories, Meyer Dana Orthodontics, Wells Fargo, Eagle Aviation, Walmart, Holiday Inn, Dana Dental Arts, Liz Fayer, and Lonnie Jensen.