Golden State Warriors hold STEAM Fest for students

At the Chase Center in San Francisco Sunday afternoon, the Golden State Warriors hosted a ‘STEAM Fest,’ a discovery and learning expo designed to expose students to science, technology, engineering, art and math. 

The annual event is designed to connect the dots between sports and STEAM for students of all ages, with experiential learning and demonstrations. 

The Santa Cruz Warriors matchup against the Rio Grande Valley Vipers took to the floor of Chase Center.

Ticket holders were welcome to explore the STEAM Fest during the game. 

UC Santa Cruz was one of the community partners who offered demonstrations on their table, along with flyers promoting three programs they offer for students and the public about STEAM opportunities through the university. 

Lindsay Lauver, an administrator at UCSC, shared that women are slowly gaining ground in these fields, but more efforts are needed to increase the pipeline for careers that require technical skills such as mathematics, engineering, science, and art. 

"In the larger STEM community, women are largely underrepresented. It's changing, but we're not quite there yet. We definitely want to promote our opportunities for women and for any underserved communities in the United States," she said.

Community groups and student clubs from around the Bay Area offered experimental education, as well as giveaways and demonstrations of 3D printing and computer programming. 

Maddie Follosco is a sophomore at Santa Clara University, who is a member of the Women’s Computer Science Club. She helped teach participants how to understand binary numbers. 

"We have a bunch of activities here for the kids, ranging from [artificial intelligence] to [virtual reality]. We're doing a binary number activity, so that's just teaching kids all about binary number systems and computers," said Follosco.

Follasco shared that she attended an event like this when she was a young girl growing up in Santa Clarita in Southern California and that event inspired her. 

"A fair like this is important for kids, to get that early exposure to STEM subjects. I think it's really powerful to know what you want to do at a young age, and I honestly wish I had figured it out sooner," she said.

Two cousins in the "Hidden Genius Project" know what advancement in education ultimately means. An opportunity to advance into a career with a comfortable life. 

"You need math, right? Stem is math, you have to add your numbers, it’s money," said 13-year-old DeMarco McCall of Oakland.

Jani Fee of Richmond is McCall’s cousin. He’s also a participant in the Hidden Genius Project and said, "I want to be able to live my life without any worries about what I’m going to do." 

On Friday afternoon, 40 young women received a free laptop, donated by I-Password and the Warriors. The event was coordinated by Self eSTEM, an Oakland non-profit that seeks to advance the presence of women in careers in STEAM. 

"We were able to invite the girls to get their new laptops and gave them instructions on how to set them up," said team member Wynn Maravilla.

Maravilla shared that the young women were very excited to receive brand-new MacBooks. 

"It's just such an incredible tool for them to use throughout their careers and for their STEM pathway," said Maravilla. "For girls who are interested in STEM, we follow them through their career pipeline. It's immersion, exploration and then support as they go on into their careers and into the workforce."

Alice Wertz is a freelance reporter for KTVU Fox 2 News. She can be reached at