Empower Students with STEM in Anaheim Tuesday or via Mercedes Carrera's Webcam?

Mercedes Carrera, porn star and former aerospace engineer
Mercedes Carrera, porn star and former aerospace engineer
YouTube/TomoNews

Quiz time: Which strategy will get more students interested in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM)?

1.) The one where they are turned on to STEM by educators who attend STEM Education Day at the Anaheim Convention Center on Tuesday.

2.) The one where they are turned on by Mercedes Carrera, who used a live cam show to establish the first porn-funded STEM scholarship.

STEM Education Day is part of UBM Canon's Advanced Manufacturing Trade Show in Anaheim.

"The collaboration is designed to help educators better understand the quality and vast array of career opportunities available to students who have the math and science skills required by Orange County manufacturers," say organizers. "The program is a part of a long-term approach to address a chronic challenge faced by Orange County manufacturers: finding qualified workers."

Twenty-five middle school educators from six Orange County school districts are attending the conference to tour the exhibit hall and discuss how to best share their experiences with students and their parents.

"We believe that educators need to start promoting Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education early to inspire students to be qualified for high paying jobs for the next generation of local manufacturing workers," say organizers.

Carrera, a former aerospace engineer, is taking a totally different approach through her organization, The Porn Charity. She teamed up with Fine Young Capitalists, a Toronto-based group that specializes in working with underrepresented groups looking to break into the technology sector, to present the live cam show for a STEM scholarship.

Webcams.com donated free airtime to Carrera's team of five porn stars, who subscribers then asked to perform specific sex acts for a fixed donation amount. Webcams.com doubled all tips and donations. More than $5,000 was raised in mere hours, and over $11,000 poured in when coupled with a separate campaign that sold Vivian James merchandise.

"The porn industry is full of very empowered women," Carrera explained to Vice, which titled its report on The Porn Charity event "These Porn Stars Fisted for Charity." "I'm on set and I'm talking to these women who are accountants and who have master's degrees--it's our dirty little secret from the outside world."

TomoNews did its own take on the event:

"I would even love to see some adult performers apply for the STEM scholarship," Carrera mentioned to Vice. "There are some brilliant people in porn and a lot of them are students."

Must ... resist ... is that a STEM in your pocket ... joke ...

Email: mcoker@ocweekly.com. Twitter: @MatthewTCoker. Follow OC Weekly on Twitter @ocweekly or on Facebook!


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