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Diversity through iOS Development - App Camp 4 Girls


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A talk about the amazing App Camp 4 Girls project run in North America. How we can help increase the Pipeline for Girls in Technology - Credits go to

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Diversity through iOS Development - App Camp 4 Girls

  1. 1. Diversity Through iOS Development App Camp 4 Girls Aimee Maree Forsstrom Aug 31-Sep 1, 2015
  2. 2. Who Am I? Aimee Maree Forsstrom Software Engineer – Educational Resarcher - Technomancer @aimee_maree Worked in the field of Information Technology since 2000 Long list of work in Open Source (but this is not relevant today) Involved with research projects around young girls in IT to change the perception of programming Currently working on a program to assist Youth on the Autistic Spectrum and IT Entreprenureship
  3. 3. Why am I Here? All good things start with a story... In 2014 I was based in Seattle, Washington, USA An Aussie Male friend of mine RT a tweet from @askvirginia “We are looking for mentors for a project mentoring kids” I responded “I can help” And there started my journey to working with one of the most innovative projects I have come across for young girls in programming
  4. 4. The History App Camp 4 Girls was founded by Jean McDonald She was inspired to launch App Camp 4 Girls by the low numbers of women she noticed at Apple's WWDC. She started thinking of ways to increase participation of young girls to help feed the pipeline and increase women's participation in Apple development. But she did not want to just teach them to code she wanted to immerse them in the software development process to inspire them onto further learning.
  5. 5. The Mission To empower girls by providing engaging and accessible educational programs in software development
  6. 6. The Vision Gender equality in the software development profession
  7. 7. Diversity
  8. 8. Women only need Apply App Camp 4 Girls inspires an interest in software development through hands-on experience in App creation led by role models from the industry. Individuals who self-identify as female, trans* (of any identity), or gender non-conforming are encouraged to Apply for mentorship positions.
  9. 9. Role Models is the DNA App Camp 4 Girls is a place where girls can put their creative powers to work designing and building Apps while learning more about the business of software and being inspired by women mentors in the field.
  10. 10. Diversity with Role Models Key ingredient All attendees are young girls (generally 12 -14) All mentors and speakers are Women in Technology This enables us to present them with role models from different backgrounds with diverse stories
  11. 11. Addressing The Question? We ask the question “Why do we need a Girls only camp and not a Boys only camp” Attendees that have been to App camps before as the only girl or there were less then 10 in a group of 100 We teach that the best way we can support Women in Technology is to support each other and be friends and promote other Women in Tech Be a friend and feel confident to talk about issues
  12. 12. Can Men Still Help? Yes, always… Spread the Word Sponsor a Camp If you know women who could help out and would like to volunteer let them know about the project
  13. 13. Curriculam Approach  One week camp  Teach creative thinking as well as design and code  Take students through the process of making an App  This means not just code but UI design, marketing, presentation skills, creative thinking  Include outdoor activities not just Info tech workshops  At the end of the week the girls pitch their ideas to a table of VCs
  14. 14. Why Is This Different? Teaching students about App building enabling all students to participate in design, marketing and development of Apps Include outdoor activities to enable social skill training and show how we always need a break from technology work Introduction of positive role models – not just mentors but bringing in experts in their fields to provide talks and teaching workshops
  15. 15. Positive Feedback “My daughter had a terrific time and was so inspired! Your camp has solidified her interest in a career as a computer programmer.” “It’s a fun camp where you get to learn so much, meet amazing people, and build friendship and confidence.”
  16. 16. Now for the Tech
  17. 17. Technology Stack Teams have Apple Mac Book Pro between students Each attendee gets an iPod Touch to run and test App's on that they can take home and show to their parents The first camps were written in ObjectiveC Teams are encouraged to draw and create their own artwork Each Team skecthes up their UI designs Hand Drawn Artwork is printed and scanned in Each team makes two badge designs of their brand
  18. 18. The { CODE } Calculator or Quiz Game App template was used This meant about 60% of the code already written Attendees needed to write the connecting code Their was time for them to take the App to the next level and add their own features and improvements For those who did not want to take it further in code they could focus on design and still have a functioning App at the end of one week
  19. 19. Growing Technology Stack First App Camps developed Basic Calculator Expanded to a more Complex Game Quiz Future Expansion: Challenge campers with more complex Games Apple Watch App's: to be able to add creating Apple Watch App's to the curriculum
  20. 20. Seattle Camp 2014
  21. 21. Seattle Camp 2015 2015 was the second App Camp ran in Seattle Three students from the prior year returned as intern mentors Swift was introduced Girls got to see how just because the code changed the Approach to building an App and the basics of programming still Applied
  22. 22. What Does The Future Hold? App Camp for Girls is Growing In 2015 there have been three camps run in North America, Portland, Seattle and Vancouver The team is always looking at expanding Current goal establish 4 new locations in North America (7 in total) I would love to see one run in Australia!
  23. 23. Support Buy the App the Students built compendium/id942207154?mt=8 Donate to the Project Sponsor a camp Talk to me How we can run one in Australia??
  24. 24. Thank You Jean!
  25. 25. Credits App Camp for Girls Logo and Photos and quotes are CopyRight App Camp 4 Girls App Camp For Girls is a non-profit corporation in the State of Oregon