REDDING, Calif. -

A group of young Shasta County girls got some real hands-on experience in engineering and technology in Redding on Saturday.

About 90 pre-teen girls took part in the fifth Annual "Wow! That's Engineering!" event at Simpson University.

The goal of the outreach program is to get the girls thinking about a career in engineering and technology.

Only about 10 percent of American engineers today are women and the number of women who enter college as engineering students is declining.

For the girls on Saturday, it was a day of hands-on activities, including designing rockets and playing with robots.

They also got to play with chemicals and learn about renewable resources.

Volunteer engineers, scientists and engineering college students led the activities and answered questions.

The program is put on by the Society of Women Engineers of Redding, who said  fourth and sixth grade girls are the perfect age to get engaged in the sciences.

“That's a kind of critical age that's been identified as a good time to make sure to introduce the concept of entering the careers in the stem field -- science, technology, engineering or math -- so that's who we target,” says Lori McNeill, president of the local arm of the Society of Women Engineers.

Educators and high school students were also involved, connecting with local professionals in engineering and science.

The event is a wrap-up to National Engineers Week.