We inspire and empower girls to pursue Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) careers.


Our girls see, believe in and achieve their STEM success

Our Values

Design Connect Create cultivates a culture where persistence is expected, curiosity is encouraged, risk is rewarded and creativity is applauded. These are our values…

Educational Equity

Equity in education means that personal or social circumstances such as gender, ethnic origin or family background, are not obstacles to achieving educational potential and that all individuals reach at least a basic minimum level of skills. We aim to provide services and resources that are accessible and equitable for every young woman.


We respect, value and celebrate the unique attributes, characteristics and perspectives that make each person who they are. We aim to bring together diverse individuals to collectively and more effectively reach our mission.


In order to leverage diversity, an environment must be created where people feel safe, supported, listened to and able to do their personal best. Rather than asking others to fit in, we aim to expand boundaries to not only include the marginalized, but to welcome and celebrate their valuable contributions to the learning environments we share.

Empathy and Vulnerability

Dr. Brene’ Brown writes: “Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability and authenticity.” In order to hold and elevate our values of equity, diversity, and inclusion, we aim to practice vulnerability, reflect on our biases, increase our self-awareness, discover ways to disrupt the status quo, and always ask, “What else might be true?”

Our Results

By empowering more young women to take rigorous math and science classes in high school, they will be prepared to choose a STEM major in college. Our camps are designed to keep more young women in the STEM education pipeline in order to create a talented and diverse STEM workforce. The first camp, offered in Dallas ISD in the summer of 2003, was funded by High-Tech High Heels and the Texas Instrument Foundation. Since that time, thousands of young women have attended physics camp. In 2014, President Wanda Gass formed Design Connect Create, a 501(c)3 non-profit, in order to expand the delivery of the camp to other school districts.

Our Girls Are More Likely to Choose STEM

A longitudinal study of high-performing females who graduated from Dallas ISD in 2006, showed that women were 2.5 times more likely to earn a four-year college degree and 4.7 times more likely to earn a 4-year college degree in science or engineering if they had attended physics camp.​

2018 Camp Report

Summer of 2018, Design Connect Create hosted 10 two-week physics camps, and 230 young women across the state of Texas actively participated! Camps were in Austin, Dallas, Fort Worth, Duncanville, Mesquite, Grand Prairie, and also at Rice University (Houston), and UT Dallas (Richardson). We encourage you to download our report to learn more about our 2018 summer program.

Our Team

Denise Strickland

Executive Director

Rosemary Aguilar

Director of Programs

Wanda Gass


Our Board

Kanika Carver

Kanika Carver, Chairman

Member Since 2016

Lauren White, Secretary

Member Since 2021

Rick Wyman, Treasurer

Member Since 2016

Dani Cook Barrows


Debjani Biswas

Member Since 2020

Rick Wyman


How could you help us?

Are you looking to serve the community outside of the board room? If you are interested in serving as an advisor, board member, fundraiser, or volunteer at-large, contact us! We need active volunteers to help us reach our goals. Share your skills with us and help us reach and inspire more girls in STEM.