Every day behind the scenes at AMC’s hit zombie series, The Walking Dead, director Aisha Tyler, costume designer Vera Chow and art director Jasmine Garnet use concepts drawn from STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) to create the world of the show – from sets to costumes to special effects.
To highlight that as well as opportunities for girls and women in these fields, AMC Networks Content Room partnered with the Ad Council, a non-profit producer of social impact ad campaigns, on a set of public service announcements that are running both on air and online. The spots are part of the Ad Council’s nationwide “She Can STEM” campaign, which seeks to increase interest in STEM for girls as well as trans and non-binary youth.
The new creative consists of TV spots and custom videos created specifically for TikTok and Instagram. The spots also feature 16-year-old scientist, inventor and activist Gitanjali Rao interviewing Tyler, Chow and Garnet as they discuss how they and their teams use STEM in the production of The Walking Dead.
In addition to being part of the Ad Council’s larger campaign, the spots are available on The Walking Dead’s social media platforms – including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube – and across AMC Networks’ linear channels and digital platforms.
“We are thrilled to partner with the Ad Council to inspire young girls in STEM through the unexpected backdrop of The Walking Dead,” said Kim Granito, EVP of AMC Networks Content Room in a statement. “Over the last 11 years, this universe has been created by an array of insanely talented women that utilize STEM every day in their roles. This campaign will broaden perceptions of STEM beyond the stereotypes of lab coats and beakers, and hopefully inspire the next generation of talented women in STEM.”
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, women make up nearly half of the total college-educated workforce in the U.S., but they only constitute 27 percent of the STEM workforce. Research shows that many girls lose interest in STEM as early as middle school, and this path continues through high school and college, ultimately leading to an underrepresentation of women in STEM careers.