National non-profit inspires New Mexico girls to pursue male-dominated career

It’s a field dominated by males, but local teen girls are hoping to change that thanks to a nationwide program showing them what a career in engineering and orthopedics looks like. 

They cut through bones, sutured pigs feet and casted each other’s arms at the University of New Mexico Saturday. 

Forty teenage girls from around the state proved they can hang with the guys in the world of Orthopedic Surgery. 

The Perry Outreach Program gives girls across the country hands-on experiences with real medical professionals. The hope is to inspire more young women to pursue careers in orthopedics and engineering which often go hand in hand. 

While 50% of medical students are women, only 6% of orthopedic surgeons are female. 

Doctor Christina Salas, an engineer in Orthopedics herself says that’s because there’s a stigma attached to the field. “You require more masculine characteristics in order to pursue an orthopedics career path, that’s actually not true,” said Dr. Salas. 

However, these ambitious young women are determined to change that. This is the 7th year The Perry Initiative has been hosted at UNM. They’re one of thirty schools across the country who are involved. 

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