We are super excited to kick off the 2017 Search for the Next Tech Girl Superhero competition this week!
In just 4 years, we have engaged approximately 1650 students in the competition directly, and those students have been supported by 400+ mentors who have volunteered more than 5000 hours of their time to make a difference to an industry in great need of talent and diversity.
We have just registered our 250th team for this year across Australia and New Zealand, which is more than 1000 students! This is double the number of competitors we had last year. We are proud to announce that we have almost completed matching every single team of girls with a female mentor working in the tech industry!
For teams, coaches and mentors registered, see the welcome video below from our CEO Jenine aka Jewella. We look forward to helping you become an entrepreneur and solve a problem in your local community. Good luck!
In March 2017, the Tech Girls Movement made their way to New Zealand for a big launch of their Tech Girls are Superheroes campaign for 2017. The original plan for the trip was to host the Superhero Daughter Day at Auckland University of Technology, bringing in 200 girls and their parents to have hands-on fun with tech.
The Superhero Daughter Day was a fun day, full of robots, pulling computers apart, and coding. In the lead-up to Superhero Daughter Day on the 18th of March, we went on a road-trip of the South Island of New Zealand. Landing in Christchurch on the 12th of March, we headed south with our New Zealand team (Dianne, Jess, and Siggy) to see how many schools, teachers, parents and career advisors we could meet in five days.
After stopping in the beautiful Oamaru overnight, we headed south to Dunedin. We visited many schools on our trip of the South Island, including Blue Mountain College, Logan Park High School, Kavanagh College, Bayfield High School, Queen’s High School, Kaikorai Valley College, Columba College, Hatch Education, Balmacewen Intermediate School, Tahuna School, Otago Girls’ High School, St Hilda’s Collegiate School, St Margaret’s College, Kaiapoi Borough School, Kaiapoi High School, Omarama School.
We reached more than 400 students in those few days in the South Island, many career advisors, industry people, and parents.
Thanks to Otago Polytechnic, for hosting us, and also to my New Zealand team who took us on this very excellent road trip to spread the Tech Girls word.
Our week ended back where we started, with our Superhero Daughter Day on the 18th of March in Auckland. Thanks to Harry and the team at Auckland University of Technology, OMGTech!, and She#.
We are so very excited to launch in New Zealand.
More photos from our exciting adventures from our road trip and launch of Tech Girls are Superheroes can be found at our flickr page
On the 8th of March, 2017, The Tech Girls Movement launched their 2017 Tech Girls Are Superheroes Campaign at Google Headquarters in Sydney. With 150 industry guests and 7 teams from the 2016 competition there to pitche their ideas, our morning tea was full of yummy cupcakes, impressive Apps, and a great feel of excitement with the theme of the day being #beboldforchange.
We received a grant from Inspire Australia through Ausindustry to fly our teams to Google to network with industry and share the wonderful solutions they’ve built as Apps.
On the day, we had two panels, one with our CEO Dr. Jenine Beekhuyzen alongside Sally-Ann Williams, Outreach Manager for Google Australia, Nicola O’Brien, Head CodeRanger, and Monica Wulff. Nicola was the Coach and Monica the mentor of Reading Republic, who were our Primary School winners of the 2016 Search for the Next Tech Girl Superhero.
Following our panel, our Reading Republic girls took to the stage. Remember, they’re 9, 10 and 11 years old, and they talked about their App and their experience in the competition with ease and humour. Their presentation was highly memorable and well received by our industry audience. They highlighted the success of the Search for the Next Tech Girl Superhero Competition, and are living proof of future Tech Girl leaders who have confidence, skills, and cool attitude.
More photos from this great event can be found at our flickr page
Registrations are now open for the 2017 Search for the Next Tech Girl Superhero! We call for coaches to register their team of tech girls and we invite girls between 7 and 17 years old to compete to be the 2017 Search for the Next Tech Girl Superhero.
We also invite mentors to register, and we match up with each team of tech girls who will participate and be part of an exciting program where you learn to be a tech entrepreneur.
Thank you to all of our funding and supporting partners helping us to grow the program.
So how does it work?
Teams of 3-5 girls from 7 to 17 years old form a group and ask a coach to represent them and register them. A coach is a parent or teacher who is the contact point for the team. The 12-week program will run in Term 2, and it will kick off on the 1st of May and conclude with entries due at 5:00 pm on Friday the 29th of July. The matching of each team of girls with a female mentor working in the tech industry is key to our program, and we try to co-locate as much as possible so the mentor can visit the girls directly. However, the program is designed to be all online so no face to face contact is expected throughout the program. We do require all mentors to have a current Working with Children check .
What do you learn?
Teams of girls work through a 12 week STEM entrepreneurship program in Term 2, provided by the Technovation Challenge which is the global app making competition for girls. Here in Australia, the Tech Girls Movement are the Regional Ambassadors for this program and we implement their curriculum. The global Technovation Challenge run their program from October to April therefore teams coming through our Australian or New Zealand timeline from May to September can enter the global Technovation Challenge with the same entry just months later for a second chance to win.
Essentially, teams need to identify a problem in their local community they would like to solve, then they need to research how other people solve that problem, then teams design their own solution in a form of a wire-frame for an app. Then teams build a working prototype of their app. Once complete, they pitch their idea and the demo they have created and tell us how amazing it is.
We will announce State and National winners both in the Secondary and Primary Category. The Tech Girls Movement will then take the winning primary and secondary teams to San Francisco in August to pitch at the Global Technovation Challenge along side teams from all around the world.
In 2016, Vocabulary Voyagers from St Mary’s Anglican Girls School in Perth who were our winning secondary school team in Australia, made it to the top 1% of entries in the global Technovation challenge alongside 800 other teams. This is the first for any Australian team. Vocabulary Voyagers Pitch Video
In March 2017, not only did we launch our Australian program at Google Headquarters in Sydney alongside a series of events for Vodafone/HP, Accenture, Avanade, the Australian Computer Society and others. We also launched the program in New Zealand in Auckland at our Superhero Daughter day on the 18th of March.
We also hosted 9 Superhero daughter days together with Diverse City Careers in March for International Womens Day to launch the program for the year across every state and territory in Australia and in Auckland. We also did a road-trip of the South Island of New Zealand to promote the program to schools locally there, and we have a team to help us expand the program across New Zealand.
We have had a very busy start to the year and are super excited to see what the entries come in. Register now tech girls, coaches and mentors for our 2017 program.
A 4-day coding workshop during the summer holidays was offered to students in Years 7-10. This was a student lead workshop run by Technology Captain 2017, Kira Molloy as well as girls from Year 12 who gave up time out of their schoolholidays to assist her. These girls were Molly Brades, Sayalee Tak and DelaneyEastabrook. During this course, girls learnt how to not only code an app but also important entrepreneurial skills such as pitching, writing a business plan, branding and marketing. Industry experts from Avanade, Microsoft and Fogarty Foundation as well as inspiring women in STEM such as Lyn Beazley and Michelle Sandford also volunteered to help the girls and delivered insights into what its like to work in technology and the ever-growing importance that technology plays in our society.
By the fourth day, the girls’ apps were impressive and you could see their excitement as their apps started to come to life. The girls have big goals such as putting their apps onto the Google Play Store, which is a goal I know they will achieve. The final day ended with a ‘pitch-off’ where each team pushed through their nerves and pitched their apps in an attempt to win a waterproof and shockproof speaker each, as kindly donated by Technology One or a Selfie stick each for second prize as kindly donated by Avanade. The pitches were judged by experts from Microsoft and Avanade and a winner was chosen. Even though not all girls won they each walked away with other gifts such as pens, goodie bags and Frisbees as donated by Technology One, Avanade and Tech Girls Movement.
These girls have shown great potential and a weekly meeting will be held throughout the year so that they can keep developing their apps before entering their apps into the National Competition Search for the Next Tech Girls Superhero and later the global Technovation competition where if they are successful will accompany team Vocabulary Voyagers to Silicon Valley. We look forward to seeing what the girls produce in the next few months to come.
We at the Tech Girls Movement are so very proud of our #techgirls running this successful workshop!
Celebrating International Womens Day in March: Superhero Daughter Day Challenges Stereotypes in Tech
Women’s job site Diverse City Careers together with us here at the non-profit Tech Girls Movement are determined to challenge gender bias and stereotypes in technology through a bold initiative aimed at primary school girls. Held to celebrate International Women’s Day, Superhero Daughter Day promotes technology as a career path of choice for young women in a fun and interactive environment.
Women are vastly underrepresented in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and maths) and new research shows that gender bias and stereotypes take form and can impact career choices as early as at the age of 6.
“Challenging these conceptions at an early age is crucial to ensure the future pipeline of STEM professionals has a gender balance that reflects the society we live in” says Gemma Lloyd, Diverse City Careers Cofounder.
After the success of the inaugural Superhero Daughter Day held in Brisbane in 2016, Diverse City Careers and Tech Girls Movement are rolling out this event across Australia along with Auckland in 2017. On a Saturday afternoon in March, over 1500 girls and their guardians will meet female role models in tech, learn about interesting careers in the industry, and participate in creative games and enjoy cupcakes.
Dr. Jenine Beekhuyzen, Founder and CEO of the Tech Girls Movement has evidence that showcasing role models and giving girls hands on skills can influence their chosen career pathways, “our research shows events like Superhero Daughter Day can impact as many as 60% of attendees to consider a career in STEM when they may not have otherwise,” says Dr Beekhuyzen.
Superhero Daughter Day is a not-for-profit event organised by volunteers and partner organisations across Australia have stepped forward to pledge their support with venues and facilitation of activities. Supporters include Auckland University of Technology Colab, Accenture, Charles Darwin University, Coder Factory Academy, CORE Education, Dr Sue Pillans, Enterprize, Inspiring Australia, Next Gen Health & Lifestyle Club, OMGTech!, She#, TechnologyOne, University of Adelaide and Zendesk, and many more.
Activities will vary from state to state and are designed to spark excitement through games and mini-workshops. Dan Siepen, Coder Factory Academy cofounder says, “STEM-related activities have always been portrayed as difficult to teach kids. What makes Superhero Daughter Day special is that it demystifies the complexity to undertake STEM-related training and activities. To have parents, grandparents, aunties and uncles learning together with the girls is a highly rewarding experience and it’s exactly what Australia needs to encourage more STEM professionals, particularly women in tech.”
In just two weeks, Superhero Daughter Day was booked out in Brisbane, Sydney and Perth with tickets disappearing fast in Adelaide, Auckland, Darwin, Hobart, Melbourne and Auckland.
For more details and to book tickets, please click here
About Tech Girls Movement Founded by Dr. Jenine Beekhuyzen in 2014, the Tech Girls Movement, is a non-profit organisation promoting positive female information technology role models to encourage and raise awareness of technology careers options for girls. For more info visit www.techgirlsmovement.org
About Diverse City Careers (DCC)
DCC is a social enterprise focused on supporting women to pursue rewarding careers across a variety of sectors. DCC is Australia’s only job site that screens employers before they can advertise based on their policies and culture around gender equality and women’s careers. DCC also runs events, campaigns and offer free resources for professional development.
About Coder Factory Academy
Coder Factory Academy is Australia’s premier technology educator offering engaging coding courses for people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds. Since 2013, Coder Factory Academy has helped hundreds of people curious about coding fulfill their tech dreams. Today, they offer a wide range of weekend workshops, short courses, school programs, corporate and teacher training, and Australia’s only accredited coding bootcamp.
Who is #Altair?
Altair sees the future. She knows that every girl has the potential to solve Earth’s current and future problems. She can multiply and become many girls simultaneously. Because of this, Altair looks like any girl and every girl. Altair can take over communication channels. And she can fly.
Why is Altair on Earth?
Altair comes from a planet of gender equality. As written by the United Nations, “Gender equality is not only a fundamental human right, but a necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world.” Altair has experienced the creation of gender equality on her planet and knows if you help the girl, you help the community. While Altair is on Earth she plans to create a Virtual Reality of her world for people to experience her gender equal planet.
What does Altair look like? You! She looks like every Australian school girl. Altair amplifies your goals and dreams. No matter where you live in Australia, what cultural group your family stems from, or how much money is in your bank account, you as an Australian school girl could be Altair.
How can you become Altair? Tell us your personal goals and your wishes for your community. Email us by Monday 27 February with one of the following:
Grab a superhero mask, a webcam and record a video.
An email outlining your thoughts
A photo of you holding up a sign stating a goal or wish. Superhero mask is always a bonus.
In addition to your email, post your entry on social media and tag #Altair.
Where can you see Altair? On International Women’s Day, Wednesday 8 March. As Altair has the power to take over communication channels, you will see your Altair and many others by searching for Femeconomy or Tech Girls are Superheroes on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
How can you support Altair? We will be sharing Altair’s official launch at Google Headquarters in Sydney on the above social media channels. Be inspired by some amazing young girls who are already changing the world with their apps thanks to the Tech Girls Movement Foundation.
Amplify Altair’s voice by sharing content using #Altair.
Back to school! 2017! It’s going to be a fabulous year.
We are super excited to kick off 2017 with a new edition of Tech Girls Are Superheroes 2 – with 4 brand new stories featuring 8 new superheroes from Australia and New Zealand!
Get your hands on a new copy of our book for your school and your students and read about the new adventures of our latest Tech Girl Superheroes!
Meet our very own Dame of Drones Dr. Catherine Ball a.k.a. Ariel Grace; our newest team from New Zealand, featuring Elyse, Anna, Alyona and Ginger as MysTech, Euresi, Lingua Franca and Alya. Also meet Vanessa and Julie aka Simplifica and Crosswalk; and Holly Tattersall as Harmony Helper. We hope you enjoy our latest superhero adventures!