Season 6: Can You Hear Me Now • June 6, 2023

Leadership, STEM, and Social Problem-Solving.

Shana Cosgrove talks to Violet Apple, CEO at Girl Scouts of Central Maryland

In this episode of The Outspoken Podcast, host Shana Cosgrove talks to Violet Apple, CEO at Girl Scouts of Central Maryland. Violet tells Shana about her thirty-year career with the Girl Scouts, working with the 111-year-old organization as it has moved its focus from informal education and service to leadership and action. Violet describes introducing new Girl Scout STEM programs, working with Johns Hopkins to teach healthy eating and exercise in schools, and introducing girls to women leaders in STEM. She stresses the Girl Scouts’ commitment to sustainable action that addresses inequity, and she shares with Shana the joys of reading for pleasure and winning at recreational softball.

  • “You do get better, I think. You get more seasoned, so that you’re not sweating the small stuff.” – Violet Apple [02:25]
  • “Some days it feels heavy. […] It’s a heavy lift when we hear about some of the things that children are going through. But there is this resiliency in girls and in the Girl Scout organization. And I lean on that. Because it may not happen; I may not see it today. But tomorrow I will.” – Violet Apple [46:21]
  • “I would love to see every girl coming out of college—or even before—have a mentor. And I’m talking about someone who’s going to challenge you, someone who’s going to be in your corner, someone who’s going to talk you through what your career path can look like. Not talk you into something, but talk you through.” – Violet Apple [50:08]
  • [00:04] Intro
  • [01:37] Meet Violet Apple
  • [03:15] Girl Scouts Is a Leadership Development Organization
  • [06:23] The Cookie Sale: From Fundraiser to Youth Entrepreneurship
  • [11:10] Top Seller Lessons: Look Them in the Eye, Always Say Thank You
  • [16:28] Own the Experience That You Have
  • [19:22] Learning by Doing
  • [22:21] STEM and Girl Scouts: Robotics and Think Like a Programmer
  • [25:57] Camping with Girl Scouts in the Twenty-First Century
  • [31:35] Healthy Living in Schools: Addressing Inequity
  • [36:51] Thin Mints Still the Favorite 
  • [41:06] A Long Career with the Girl Scouts
  • [46:54] Distinguished Women 
  • [49:34] Advice to Young Professional Women: Have a Mentor
  • [51:10] Reading (and Listening) for Pleasure and Laughter
  • [56:38] Outro

I’d love to hear from you — your feedback is important to me and I read all of it. If you enjoyed the podcast, I hope you’ll give us 5 stars. I’ll be sure to thank you via email. If not, let me know what you think we should do differently. Don’t forget to hit “subscribe” so you’ll receive notifications about guest interviews and other topics that drop every Tuesday.

Live well, Shana

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