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All about the

Our mission is to encourage and inspire girls through media that they can change their world around them by pursuing Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics.

Funded by


We celebrate individuality, diversity, and passion.


Nerd Girls was founded by Dr. Karen Panetta, a professor and Dean at Tufts University and an IEEE Fellow, to empower female engineering students and challenge the stereotypes and myths about women in the profession. Panetta teamed up with award-winning producer Karen Johnson and Oscar® and Emmy®-nominated filmmaker Paola di Florio to create media content and further develop the Nerd Girls brand. One of Nerd Girls’ main goals, to “redefine nerd,” aims to debunk stereotypes and serve as a catalyst in shifting the negative results of female portrayal in the media through positive messaging, opportunities and support for young women.  The Nerd Girl Nation web series, which was directed by Paola di Florio, is cohosted by Dr. Panetta and Craig “Lowie” Low, an award-winning Australian comedian, TV host, radio host, and writer.

Season 1 Episodes

Episode 1: Drones & Exoplanets - View Now 

Loren Grush is a journalist who "translates" all things science, while Sally French gives a new perspective on Drones.

Episode 2: The Girls Behind the Board - Coming December 2018

The magic behind movie sounds and the beats behind pop hits, Ginge Cox and Grammy-winner Laura Sisk talk all things sound.

Episode 3: User Experience - Coming January 2019

Why we prefer certain apps over others, Deypika Singh highlights the psychology behind a user's experience.

Episode 4: Solar Impulse Girl - Coming February 2019

Paige Kassalen shares how she became part of the ground crew for the first solar powered plane to fly around the world.

Episode 5: Sports - Coming March 2019

Autumn Greco fuses fashion and science while Alison Sheets fuses body mechanics and athletic clothing as an engineer at Nike.

Episode 6: Comics - Coming April 2019

Superheros, Sci-fi, DC vs Marvel, it's all things comics with Hope Nicholson.

Episode 7: Disneyland Efficiency - coming May 2019

How the happiest place on earth keeps the park lines entertaining and the churro cart in the perfect spot. Karen Rockwell shares the secrets behind Disneyland's efficiency.

Episode 8: Aerospace | Original Nerd Girls - Coming June 2019

Travel down memory lane with one of the original Nerd Girls, Danielle Vardaro, who explains what ignited the Nerd Girls mission 

Episode 9: Bio-Physics - Coming July 2019

From Bio-physics to nanotechnology Mercedes Cornelius and Lisa Goel delve into the future of everything from medicine to clothing.


Episode 10: Hollywood - Coming August 2019

Technology and art work together to create movie magic. Find out how as Narcos-cinematographer Carmen Cabana and aspiring director Kathryne Jansen breakdown Hollywood.


Episode 11: Climate Change - Coming September 2019

Rashmi Shah from NASA's Jet Propulsion laboratory explains climate change and Clara Nevins stands up as a voice for the youth.


Episode 12: Forensics Beauty Queen - Coming October 2019

From beauty queen to a forensic scientist, Alayna Westcom brings to life the science behind death


Karen Panetta

Founder Nerd Girls, Inc.

Karen is professor at Tufts University, an engineer at the forefront of her field. She travels the globe inspiring youth to pursue science and engineering. Her work pushes innovation and she has received awards such as: Presidential Award from Barack Obama for Education, Norm Augustine Award and IEEE Award for ethical practices.

Paola Di Florio

Co-founder Nerd Girls, Inc.

Producer | Director

Paola is the director of Nerd Girl Nation. She is an Oscar and Emmy-nominated filmmaker and TV producer whose work has featured extraordinary individuals and the triumph of the human spirit. Her films include: AWAKE:The Life of Yogananda, Home of the Brave, and Speaking in Strings.

Karen Johnson

Co-founder Nerd Girls, Inc.


Karen is a producer who is interested in stories that are by, for, and/or about women. Her award winning productions have played at top film festivals, won awards, and been distributed and broadcasted throughout the world. Her films include: Double Dare, Twice Upon A Yesterday.

Peter Rader

Producer Nerd Girl Nation

Peter has worked in the film industry for 20 years and has helped develop numerous projects for studios, and industry leaders such as Steven Spielberg, Dino De Laurentiis and John Davis. He most recently produced the award-winning documentary AWAKE:The Life of Yogananda,

Kathryne Jansen

Associate Producer Nerd Girl Nation

Kathryne graduated with honors from The Los Angeles Film School. As a producer her short films have won awards such as, The Audience Choice Award and Best Short Thriller. She also produced, wrote, and directed her short film, A Crow's Whisper, the official selection for the Cibra and Tallinn Film Festival.

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