Worldwide Director

Chairman and Founder, Melissa Rancourt


Do you remember the moment you decided to become an engineer?

Funny enough I remember the exact moment.  I had just finished the book Cheaper by the Dozen about 2 people (husband & wife) and their work in efficiency, production control, human factors – all these great subjects.   I remember I put the book down on the kitchen table and looked across to my Mom and said “Too bad this isn’t a real job.  I wish I could do the same thing.”  She told me – Yes, it is a real job, it is called Industrial Engineering – and Yes, you most certainly can do the same thing.  

Why did you send the e-mail that launched greenlight for girls?

I sent the e-mail and launched this initiative because it felt like just the right moment.  But the initiative only works because others also felt it was needed and because we have been amazingly lucky to have wonderful people working to make all this come alive.

Read the full interview and visit Melissa's linkedin page!

 

“If there is one message that I’d like you to remember = it is that – Anything is possible!”   This message is a common way that we begin to present our organisation to girls of all ages and backgrounds. 

Our organisation, greenlight for girls, started with one e-mail sent to less than 100 people across the world, with one question – do you believe there is something we need to do to encourage girls in science?

The answer?  Within 12 months, we had an official organisation, with over 500 volunteers, operating in every continent of the world.  We conduct events and activities to encourage girls of all ages to see the fun in science and the link to the world around us.  We are now reaching our 2nd birthday and are very lucky to be working with so many dedicated volunteers and to be reaching so many greenlight girls.

Our strategy started by turning the usual business model upside down.  First show the results, the need in the market and our capabilities, and then build a financial model that will sustain us for years to come.  We began with our (now) flagship event to bring forward a full day of science (in its fullest meaning) fun to girls in the Brussels area, our headquarters.  Due to the success of that day, our activities continue to thrive and grow and have now reached a few countries in Europe (Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Switzerland), the US (New England), Africa (the Democratic Republic of the Congo), Asia (Bangalore India) and Brazil.

Our strategy and goals in each region of the world corresponds to the need in that region – all under the same mission of encouraging girls of all ages and backgrounds in science, math, engineering and technology.

We are volunteer run, fuelled by passion for instilling confidence in girls, and wish to share the fun of science in all its forms.  We look for key individuals who wish to lead our activities in their areas and we work with like-minded partners who can help (and whom we can help) to encourage girls that anything is possible.

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Greenlight for girls in the press Worldwide:

EC Vice President Viviane Reding publishes list of 150 Europe executives to shatter glass ceiling in Boardrooms - g4g Founder is on the list

17 July 2012 – Boston University Brussels helps to transport books across the world for g4g Science Library,http://www.buleadershipcorner.blogspot.be/2012/07/the-bub-summer-newsletter-is-out.html

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Speaking Engagements in the Area:

8 December 2011 – Keynote address at Entrepreneurship Conference in Zayed University, Abu Dhabi

1 February 2012 – “Guerrilla Innovation at an NGO” presentation in Tallinn, Estonia, http://www.eaq.ee/en/content/conference-program

19 April 2012 – “The Science in a Daisy” keynote presentation at the Women’s International Club

27 July 2012 – g4g founder gives Keynote presentation at International Association Day event, http://visitbrussels.be/bitc/BE_en/content/11695/association-days.do