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November 18, 2019

TechGirlz Teen Advisory Board Members Gain Valuable Experiences as Aspiring Technologists – Part 2

Seven teenage girls with a love of technology spent a busy year serving on the TechGirlz Teen Advisory Board (TAB). Chosen at the beginning of the 2018-2019 school year, these girls met (virtually and in person) to give input on TechGirlz programs. While serving, they also led workshops, developed curricula and gained valuable skills as aspiring technologists.


TechGirlz, a Creating IT Futures program, exposes middle school girls to potential tech careers through fun and educational hands-on workshops called TechShopz and through other activities to inspire a lifelong passion and confidence in their use of technology throughout their careers.


Volunteer Amy Freeman caught up with members of the 2018-2019 TAB to find out what their year was like. They shared insights into their experience serving on the TAB and how their TAB tenure inspired them to pursue other leadership opportunities.


Take a peek at what tomorrow’s technologists were up to in this second post in our 3-part series:


Lauren-Phillips-headshot-150x150Lauren Phillips


Lauren Phillips had a busy, travel-filled summer. She went to Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, to attend CURIE Academy, a camp for girls. While at the camp, Phillips studied tendons to discover effective ways to repair them using gel scaffolding. She says that the camp was “extremely fun” and gave her a glimpse into what college might be like.


In addition to the camp, Phillips TA’ed 3D Computer Graphics and Animation with and Designing Mobile Apps workshops, both in June. She also helped out at Girls Take Charge. The rest of the summer saw her traveling to California, Florida and Georgia. An athlete, Phillips went to two field hockey camps and ran in the Junior Olympics.


Phillips is grateful to have had an “amazing year” with TechGirlz: “I have honestly learned a lot from volunteering and teaching, and I’m glad I’ve discovered something new that I really enjoy doing. I look forward to new experiences at hand and to help the program expand in the future.”


Paige-Burns-headshotPaige Burns


Paige Burns spent the year spreading the joy of TechGirlz around Colorado. She assisted at two workshops in Denver: Designing Mobile Apps and A Day in the Life of a Web Designer. She also taught three workshops on her own: YOU Can Code, How Engineers Solve Problems Using 3D Printing and TinkerCAD and Intro to Javascript. She was one of two TAB members to create content for the TechGirlz Instagram, including posts about influential women in tech (past and present) for “Thinker Thursday” and daily posts during Women’s History Month.


Over the summer, Burns ran a one-week Arduino programming camp at the Innovation Center of St. Vrain in Longmont, Colorado, for 20 girls. She received funding for the camp from the AspireIT program at the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT). During the program, the girls learned how to build and code an Arduino robot. They also developed teamwork and presentation skills and heard women from local tech companies talk about their jobs and experience working in technology.


Click to read Part 1 and Part 3 of this series.


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