NexGeneGirls: Inspiring A New Generation of Women Scientists


Recently, I attended the first annual NexGeneGirls Summer of Science Internship Awards Ceremony, at our Willie Mays Clubhouse at Hunters Point.

The ceremony concluded an year-long internship where 12 high school BGCSF Club members had the opportunity to work side-by-side professional women scientists, conduct their own hands-on experiments, and mentor other young girls.

We were proud to host such an amazing event and program. To get a sense of the program, watch the video below:


NexGeneGirls Founder, Marlena Jackson.

NexGeneGirls was started in 2011 by Marlena Jackson, a scientist at Genetech and Bayview resident herself. The purpose of the program is to inspire and support women—specifically women of color—to join Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) professions.


“Marlena is creating a program and an opportunity to change people’s lives…and redefining what the scientist world looks like.” — Supervisor Malia Cohen.

Women of color hold only 3% of the STEM related jobs in the United States. But thanks to help from The California Endowment and the Bay Bio Institute, NexGeneGirls is really taking off.


NexGeneGirls Intern, Mykel Sisk, explaining her science project that extracted DNA from bacteria in the salt marshes of Heron’s Head Park to determine pollution levels.

One of the main projects the NexGeneGirls carried out over the summer was to extract DNA from a single colony of bacteria in the salt marshes of Heron’s Head Park, with the idea of understanding the pollution and how it effects our community.  They also conducted gel electrophoresis and used molecular fingerprinting techniques to explore the microbiome.  

The NexGeneGirls learned a lot of about science, but also about themselves.



View more photos from the event:

Can’t see the slideshow? View it on our Flickr page.

Thank you Sponsors!

California Endowment
Bay Bio Institute
Anthony’s Cookies
Brothers & Sons Bake Goods
Next Arts
Ria Mcleod
Taste Catering
Elaina Jackson
And all of the many volunteers who made this summer so special for our NexGeneGirls!

For more information about NexGeneGirls, visit

Written by Ian Gardiner - All stories by Ian