High School Girl Scouts from across Connecticut got a crash course in college life and learning at Girl Scouts of Connecticut’s annual Camp CEO held for the first time at Quinnipiac University (QU) from August 6-12, 2023. The inaugural partnership between Girl Scouts of Connecticut (GSOFCT) and QU in Hamden, Conn. gave 18 girls the incredible opportunity to experience campus living, take classes from QU business professors and learn about potential career choices from female CEO’s and professional mentors. The intensive curriculum focused on social entrepreneurism with the theme of mental health & wellness for teens.
“Part of our mission at Girl Scouts of Connecticut is to help girls build their leadership skills through “hands-on” experiences and guide them to become our future women leaders of tomorrow,” said Diana Mahoney, Chief Executive Officer of Girl Scouts of Connecticut. “We designed Camp CEO to bring together older girls and Connecticut’s top women professionals for a few days of fun and learning.”
Mahoney explains the program was open to Girl Scouts entering the 9th – 12th grade this fall. Participants worked with three college professors and the Dean of the business college at QU from Monday through Thursday to develop a business project. They formed small teams, brainstormed ideas, and started to develop their pitches that the girls presented to their families on the last day. To encourage leadership, the girls and their mentors worked together to refine their projects. A key component of the experience was for the mentors to share their path to success with the girls.
Additionally, Girl Scouts in attendance had an opportunity to connect with Mahoney as well as GSOFCT’s Girl Scout Experience department, including the Director of Girl Scout Experience, Gold Award Coordinator, GSE Global initiatives and travel Coordinator, GSE STEM program Manager, and GSE Manager who supports all aspects of programs council wide. The Girl Scouts’ voices, ideas, and feedback were heard by staff who can make changes. The staff also shared all of the opportunities available to the girls in Girl Scouting.
“These Girl Scouts are engaged and focused, and every time we raised the bar a level and gave them another layer of how to create their business model and share their ideas, they stepped up and asked for more,” said one Quinnipiac University professor “It is a truly exceptional group of young women who are definitely changing the world.”
By living in the dorm, the Girl Scouts met roommates from other Connecticut towns and Massachusetts, while using their free time to enjoy campus and being together as a group. They bonded as teammates to solve conflicts, work out solutions and hone their pitch.
“This was so awesome. I know I got kind of homesick, but it was worth it!” said one of the Girl Scouts, age 14.
“The partnership between GSOFCT and QU is new this year and we are excited to see where this leads as it was so successful and impactful,” said Mahoney.
About Girl Scouts of Connecticut
Girl Scouts bring their dreams to life and work together to build a better world. Through programs from coast to coast, Girl Scouts of all backgrounds and abilities can be unapologetically themselves as they discover their strengths and rise to meet new challenges—whether they want to climb to the top of a tree or the top of their class, lace up their boots for a hike or advocate for climate justice, or make their first best friends. Backed by trusted adult volunteers, mentors, and millions of alums, Girl Scouts lead the way as they find their voices and make changes that affect the issues most important to them. To join us, volunteer, reconnect, or donate, visit www.gsofct.org.
About Quinnipiac University
Quinnipiac University in Hamden, CT is a private, coeducational university where students engage in an educational experience that is both personal and challenging from faculty who care deeply about student outcomes. They offer more than 140 programs to approximately 6,800 undergraduate and 3,000 graduate students. QU offers numerous programs to high school students, including computing and data sciences; business; entrepreneurship and innovation; fundamentals of data analysis and Microsoft Excel; game design and eSports; intro to cybersecurity; and more.
PHOTO: Participants of the first class at Camp CEO hosted by Girl Scouts of Connecticut from August 6-12, 2023 at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Conn. enjoyed an immersive on-campus experience that gave high school Girl Scouts a week to formulate a social entrepreneurial pitch in classes with QU professors and with guidance from female business mentors.
Courtesy of: Girl Scouts of Connecticut