FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – On Thursday, efforts to expose young minds to science, technology, engineering, and math were celebrated across the country.

November 8 is National S.T.E.M./S.T.E.A.M Day.

READ MORE: 'My Nerves Are Still Rattled': Passenger Aboard Amtrak Train Talks Crash

For a group of students from Fort Worth’s Young Women’s Leadership Academy, it’s a day they’ve eagerly awaited.

“Their dreams are reality and to really dream as high and as far as they can and realize those dreams,” said Principal Tamara Albury.

Senior Sandra Villagrana is captain of the girls-only robotics team. She said her way of celebrating National S.T.E.M./S.T.E.A.M Day is by showing gratitude for having been exposed to it in the first place.

STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in four specific disciplines — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — in an interdisciplinary and applied approach. (photo credit: CBS 11 News)

“I want to be a mechanical engineer or a mathematician just because I have had these engineering classes and I’ve fallen in love with it.”

Villagrana is part of a group of students solving engineering challenges and getting ready for a big S.T.E.M. competition this weekend.

READ MORE: Man, Pregnant Woman & Baby Killed In Crash Along Highway 360; Police Investigating

Educational efforts to attract students into S.T.E.M careers are helping address a shortage in stem field professionals… and also breaking stereotypes in careers typically dominated by males.

It’s a reality not lost on the young women.

“What I always go back to is a quote from Michelle Obama that says ‘always make sure that you have a seat at the table,’ ” said Junior Amyia Green.

Her attitude is music to educator’s ears who say S.T.E.M curriculum is just as much about problem solving in and out of a classroom.

“You know that concept, “When am I actually going to use that in life?’ This is where you’re going to learn it,” said engineering teacher Sergio Flores.

The Young Women’s Leadership Academy robotics team is the only all-girl team competing on Saturday.

MORE NEWS: Flash Flooding: Second Body Recovered After Vehicle Swept From Texas Bridge