March 8, this year is will be “A day without a woman”. At StartupWonder, we have been teaching girls programming and technology during the months of summer. We firmly believe that everyone needs to know a programming language and learn some of the tools that help them create Apps or games. This is not to say that everyone needs to be a programmer, however, technology is ubiquitous in our lives.
Summer camper are generally very comfortable with technology. However, the digital divide will make it necessary to provide STEM and Coding education to all students in any socioeconomic status. Currently, girls and women are underrepresented in technology careers. StartupWonder hopes to help change that. We ask Women Who Code, a nonprofit organization for women in technology to partner with us and help mentor our summer camp students in Silicon Valley.
If “A day without a woman” happened decades ago, maybe the first images that came to mind would be of a dinner table with no food on it, however, increasingly that image has changed, particularly in western societies and more so in Silicon Valley. However, we still have a long way to go.
Last summer, while mentoring StartupWonder’s Cupertino and Milpitas summer camps, I noticed the majority of students in technology and entrepreneurship camp were girls. The camp companies that had majority or at least a good size minority of girl participants has in the past had produced better products, games or Apps and had a better track record of winning the pitch and hack Convention contests. This observation may not scientific but is echoed by many tech diversity professionals and proves there is hope.
StartupWonder provides Bay Area Summer Camps in Technology, STEM, Coding and Business for kids and children in grades 2-12. StartupWonder was founded to encourage youth to practice their creativity in real life problems and determine viability of those creative solutions. We teach STEM and computer coding or programming in summer camp so students can invent a product or solution, learn to write code and design computer games or Apps. Student will then investigate how to bring their solution to life and productizing it by writing a business plan. Finally, they have to pitch their startup idea in the Convention contest where they get feedback and winners receive awards.
Any child can Start Wonder!