Career Of The Year: Barbie Is Now A Robotics Engineer

By Tanya Diente, Parent Herald June 28, 08:50 am
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Mattel is upping its influence factor in telling girls they can be anything they want to be with the release of a new career doll called  Robotics Engineer Barbie.

Career Inspiration

Mattel aims to entice girls in STEM job with the release of the Robotics Engineer Barbie in the market. With the Barbie, the company is encouraging young people to explore a career in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics or STEM.

To help children familiarize themselves with robotics engineering, the company has partnered up with Tynker, the gaming platform that guides kids about coding. The partnership aims to inform kids about the jobs available as a robotics engineer, such as the creation of robots that can explore space.

"Our mission is to empower youth to become the makers of tomorrow through coding, and the Barbie brand is an ideal partner to help us introduce programming to a large number of kids in a fun, engaging way," Krishna Vedati, co-founder and CEO of Tynker, says.

Lisa McKnight, Barbie's general manager and senior vice president, says the release of the Robotics Engineer Barbie is the company's way of shedding light on STEM jobs, which she says is an "underrepresented career and field for women."

"Only 24 percent of STEM jobs are held by women, and we felt that Barbie, with the platform that we have, was the perfect opportunity to do more in this space, " McKnight tells Glamour.

Barbie Accessories

The new Barbie doll comes with all the necessary tools needed for its career specification thanks to the help of Cynthia Breazeal, founder of the social robot company Jibo, Inc. Robotics Engineer Barbie comes with safety goggles, a doll-size laptop computer, and a tiny robot with movable arms. The doll is also available in different ethnicities-Caucasian, African-American, Latina, and Asia.

Fashion is also a key aspect in the doll's identity and for this matter, Robotics Engineer Barbie stays true to its label. It is about authenticity, so instead of heels, she wears flats or sneakers for comfort when walking around the laboratory.

Her hair is also tied in a ponytail or in a bun to avoid distractions. All the girls wear the same outfit consisting of a graphic shirt, black jeans, and a blue denim jacket.

McKnight says that they worked with a female professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology to ensure that the doll's fashion reflects someone in her profession.

Robotics Engineer Barbie is available for purchase through Mattel's online store. The doll retails for $13.99.

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