BSA | The Software Alliance sponsored the first-ever Washington, DC Girls Who Code summer immersion program. Here, several of the students share journal entries about their experiences.
“Throughout my time here at Girls Who Code we’ve learned a lot of skills that I can take into the future. I think my favorite skill, other than the coding, has to be learning about how to take advantage of the mentorship opportunities they presented to us. From encouraging everyone to ask important questions to making our very first LinkedIn accounts, Girls Who Code has taught us not only how to be good coders, but good leaders too.”
“Each person that came in to speak to us has been an absolute blessing to me and definitely inspired me to be a better version of myself. They made me realize that a woman can also be great and hold a major position. Throughout this summer I saw a diverse group of speakers which meant everything to me because that informs me that, I can be something great regardless of my color and where I’m from.”
“At Girls Who Code, I believe the most surprising thing to me was the information I would gain related to computer programming, and the people I would meet. You learn more than coding; you learn life skills, how to network with people that you meet, and how to present yourself in a professional manner. Attending Girls Who Code may be one of the best ways to spend a summer, because you are learning things you will use forever.”
“I think I learned the most from Dr. Phyllis Schneck. While touring the NCICC/DHS I learned she and her team do a lot more than just look for malicious terrorists. They also monitor domestic problems such as electricity in a city or water supply. They use weather and information gathered from outer space to alert citizens of “normal” problems. I realize that her work impacts us daily and I don’t think everyone knows that. We take their work for granted and it should be known.”
“Because of Girls Who Code, I now have the skills to program almost anything I want. I have basic skills that I can use as a platform to learn new things on the internet. I believe that now I can program any website, app, or robot that I want. I don’t think I’m quite proficient enough to create convincing computer animation, but I can certainly learn more, and I’m eager to do so.”
“My mom works for the government and when she talks about it, it seems very slow and boring (maybe that’s just her job, who knows!) so I thought I knew I didn’t want to work in the government. But every single one of the women talked about how much they loved working in it because they never knew exactly what was coming and there were always new and fun things to work on! I definitely think I want to get some job experience outside of the government first, just to see what I do and don’t like, but I think later on in my life I would like to work there.”
“I now have an extremely strong base in programming and I feel like there’s a lot that I could do. I am, by no means, completely versed in everything I’ve learned so far or computer science in general but I now know how to go about solving programming problems and learning more. In short, Girls Who Code gave me a solid base that I can continue to build upon for the rest of my life.”