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Girls With Albemarle County Summer Camp Build Bridge

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ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) -

A group of young students came together and battled the mud and rain Tuesday to build a bridge along the Rivanna Trail.

The MESA Bridge Camp is for ambitious middle school girls and is a week-long program focused on math and physics. The program is made up 25 girls who give back to the community through their love of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

Camp activities, such as building the bridge, inspire the students to pursue careers in STEM related fields.

Ayoade Balogun is a 17-year-old student at Albemarle High School. She created the MESA Bridge Camp last summer to inspire girls to pursue any career they want.

“It's good to get them started now - looking at all the things they can do and aren't limited by just because of their gender,” Balogun said.

Holly Hilton is also from Albemarle High School and a student mentor for the Mesa Camp. She says, despite the early hours, building the bridge has been fun and rewarding.

“When we first got here everybody was like, 'uh, I want to go back to sleep,' but once we got down here, we were like, 'we're actually building a bridge. This is really exciting. We get to use power tools,’” said Hilton.

Balogun is entering her senior year of high school, but she plans have the program continue long-term after she heads to college. 

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