Girls Who Code is on a mission to close the gender gap in technology and to change the image of what a programmer looks like and does. This organization is offering opportunities to students and alumni to deepen their computer science skills as well as their confidence. Female coders can join any of the 100 clubs run by Girls Who Code (women coders) to develop the technical skillset.
In 1995, out of all computer scientists, 37% were female computer scientists. Today it’s only 24%. While girls’ participation in computer science ebbed over time, the biggest drop off happens between the ages of 13-17. Taking care of the eligible women programmers GWC was set up, to make sure that there is no more backdrop in female computer scientists in the years to come.
When Indian origin lawyer and politician, Resham Saujani, visited a school in New York during her political campaign in 2012, she observed that only boys occupied the front row in the Computer Science classes while only a handful of coding girls were present. The biased sex ratio in those classrooms moved Resham to the extent that she decided to start an initiative to bring gender parity in tech classrooms.
Girls who code
The NGO ‘Girls Who Code’ originally started in America and later expanded to Canada, UK, and India to encourage women in coding. GWC provides a platform for girls to learn and march into the world of technology. The program initially started with 20 girls in the US which have now touched the number of 1,85,000 girls around the world. In India itself, there are 100 clubs across Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad, and Mumbai.
Next-Gen women coders
The GWC program has made collaborations with schools and orphanages to encourage girls across the socio-economic spectrum to pursue STEM careers.
Fighting the stereotype
Living in the bubble of misconception, it is perceived that coding is jargon-fuelled and requires dealing with complicated amasses of numbers, which prevents women from foraying into the field. GWC believes in exposing young girls to the coding environment so they gain inspiration from experienced female computer scientists who forayed in this field and eventually excelled. This additionally provides sisterhood to the newbies so they can look out for support.
Coding girls – Join the club
The initiative is an after school activity for girls in the age group of 11-18 years. Right from the basic coding to an advance level, there are several modules to learn. They also provide the required resources for learning. The student members of the club are required to attend at least one session per week and are awarded certifications at the end of it. GWC aims at providing not only technical knowledge but also has thrived to build real-world problems such as website making, app development, etc.
Girls are made to think critically and develop communication skills. GWC believes that the seed for coding needs to be inculcated at an early age so coders are open to the opportunity to explore more options and create a strong mentor network.
Girls Who Code has a tremendous impact on the pipeline of girls and women entering computer science. They are committed to corporate partners and communities so that every girl gets the opportunity to thrive in tech.