CHICAGO (March 5, 2019) – U.S. Soccer announced today that it will partner with IF/THEN, an initiative of Lyda Hill Philanthropies supporting women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
IF/THEN, built on the mantra that “if we support a woman in STEM, then she can change the world,” seeks to advance women in STEM by empowering current innovators and inspiring the next generation of female pioneers.
This first-of-its-kind coalition emphasizes that STEM is everywhere, essential to the success of all fields from entertainment to business, and that there is no better time to highlight positive and successful female professional role models to activate a culture shift among young girls and their potential of careers in STEM.
U.S. Soccer will work with IF/THEN to hire more women into new, full-time positions to support the Federation’s high-performance department and initiatives. Covering such STEM areas as sports medicine, sports science, data and performance analysis, these positions will directly impact U.S. Soccer’s ability to support and develop world class players within the U.S. National Team program.
“Our Women’s National Team is one of the most successful teams in the history of sports,” said U.S. Soccer CEO/Secretary General Dan Flynn. “That success would not be possible without the medical experts and sports scientists that support our athletes. We are proud to collaborate with IF/THEN and Lyda Hill Philanthropies to raise the profile of the women in STEM at U.S. Soccer to show youth that even if you do not take the field in the World Cup, by pursuing STEM you can still be part of our team.”
Though women constitute about half of the college-educated workforce in the United States, just a quarter of STEM professionals are female, and a lack of funding and visibility has caused female STEM professionals to receive significantly less credit for their work. This STEM gender gap has impacted perceptions of women in STEM, and trickles down to younger generations.
“We need more women scientists to put their stories out there so girls can see what they can be when they grow up,” said Nicole Small, president of Lyda Hill Philanthropies and co-founder of IF/THEN. “To ensure that current female STEM innovators are supported, and girls are exposed to the STEM role models they need, we must join forces toward this common goal. We believe that having diverse perspectives at the table is key to building a more innovative future, and if we work together, we can truly shift the culture to inspire the next generation of female world-changers. That is why we are partnering with U.S. Soccer.”
For more information about the coalition, visit www.ifthenshecan.org.
IF/THEN is part of Lyda Hill Philanthropies’ commitment to fund game-changing advancements in science and nature. IF/THEN seeks to further advance women in STEM by empowering current innovators and inspiring the next generation of pioneers. Rooted in a firm belief that there is no better time to highlight positive and successful female professional role models, IF/THEN is designed to activate a culture shift among young girls to open their eyes to STEM careers by: (1) funding and elevating women in STEM as role models, (2) convening cross-sector partners in entertainment, fashion, sports, business and academia to illuminate the importance of STEM everywhere, and (3) inspiring girls with better portrayals of women in STEM through media and learning experiences to pique their interest in STEM careers. To learn more, visit www.ifthenshecan.org.