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Providence Community Library’s “Girls Who Code Club” Targets Gender Gap in Computer Careers

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

 

Providence Community Library (PCL) will launch a Girls Who Code Club at its Rochambeau location on January 22.  Led by Gryte Satas, a female instructor from Brown University’s Department of Computer Science, the Club will offer girls an opportunity to learn about artificial intelligence, cryptography, graphics, mobile development and other computer and coding skills.  Rochambeau’s club will be the only public Girls Who Code club in Rhode Island and any girl in grades 6-12 will be eligible to join it.

The "Girls Who Code" Club will offer girls an opportunity to learn about artificial intelligence, graphics, mobile development and other coding skills.

The club’s mission is to inspire, educate and equip girls with skills to pursue 21st century opportunities. The U.S. Department of Labor projects that 1.4 million computer specialist job openings will exist by 2020, but currently, women are a minority when it comes to technology careers. In 2013, women held less than 25 percent of technical jobs, despite representing the majority of the labor force. Less than four percent of high school girls expressed an interest in studying computer science in college and fewer than one in five AP test-takers were girls.

PCL joined forces with Girls Who Code after a mother and daughter approached the library with the idea of starting a club.  “Girls Who Code is an amazing organization” said Ed Graves, Rochambeau Regional Librarian, "We're excited to expand programming offered by our computer lab and to get more girls involved in a widening computer science field.” Gryte Satas, the Club’s Instructor, graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a degree in Physics and Computer Science before working as a programmer, creating molecular dynamics simulations, in the Department of Biochemistry at Saint Louis University. She joined Brown University’s Cancer Genomics group in 2014 and began a doctoral program in the same group.

Rochambeau’s Girls Who Code Club will meet at 708 Hope Street on Thursdays from 6:00p.m. to 8:00p.m.  Membership of the club requires registration; visit the library, email [email protected]  or call 401-272-3780 for more information. 

 

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