"To this day, boys are pushed in the science and math fields. There's an unintentional bias. I don't think anyone is doing it on purpose," she said.
Girls, she says, need to be made aware of what is available to them.
"There are different ways to do that: after-school activities, math camps, trips to science museums -- anything that could spark their interest," she said.
Purcell is thrilled that her 13-year-old daughter, who has had her share of math campus and Girl Scouts, enjoys math. At present, she is interested in teaching, Purcell said.
"I'm hoping I'm a good role model for her. If she wants to be a teacher, that's fabulous. Our educators are fabulous. I just want her to be aware of what's out there," she said.