About Mission Projects

Our mission is focused on advancing equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy, and research. The American Association of University Women (AAUW) is the nation’s leading voice promoting equity and education for women and girls.  To further that mission, we raise funds for the following projects:


AAUW awards scholarships to senior girls from Big Bear High School. The current emphasis is selecting applicants with an A or B average pursuing a college education in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).  Scholarships are given after the successful completion of the first year of college and proof of enrollment in the second year. From 2000 to 2019, we awarded $40,000 to 44 Big Bear High School graduating seniors.

Tech Trek

Through hands-on problem solving and encounters with women role models in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), AAUW Tech Trek helps girls see their futures while having nonstop fun. This one-week summer camp is backed by AAUW’s research and designed to make STEM fields exciting and accessible to girls in middle school — the age when girls’ participation in these fields statistically drops. For many girls, the weeklong camp sparks their curiosity and places them on a path toward success. From 2000 to 2019, we awarded over $100,000 to send 135 Big Bear Middle School girls. 

Speech Tech

Speech Trek is an AAUW California project to promote understanding and communication of gender-equity issues among high school students through their research, preparation, and presentation of high-quality speeches, while promoting the value of public speaking as a life and leadership skill.  BBVAAUW adopted this program in 2016. From 2012 to 2018, we awarded almost $9,000 in scholarship awards to 25 Big Bear High School students.

New!  Zoo Experience 

The Zoo Experience is a new STEM project sponsored and created by BBVAAUW and the Big Bear Alpine Zoo in cooperation with the Big Bear Valley Unified School District.  The purpose is to promote creative learning opportunities for girls in STEM Fields outside of the classroom, encourage leadership and community involvement in the zoo while meeting the goals of 21st century learning.  Participants were three Big Bear High School girls who benefited from a hands-on STEM exploration internship-style program with Zoo personnel and AAUW mentors. This is a new program that we hope to expand in the future.  We are estimating this program to cost from $500 to $1,500 a year.

Development of Mission Based Projects

We periodically organize additional mission-based programs to engage students and women in our community.  In the past, we have had essay contests, career day presentations, Title IX reviews, voter registration, Equal Pay Day, and others.