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The girls of San Fernando High School with a prototype of their invention. GoFundMe / Violet Mardirosian

By Joe McCarthy

They didn't know how to sew. They didn't know how to code. They didn't know how to solder. And they had never used a 3D printer before. But 12 girls at San Fernando High School taught themselves all these skills—and more—to create a solar-powered tent for homeless people.

It's a feat of scientific ingenuity that shows how much potential is squandered every day when girls aren't encouraged to pursue STEM careers as much as boys traditionally have been. And it shows the astonishing imaginative reach of young people.

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