TECHNOLOchicas is a national initiative of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) and Televisa Foundation designed to raise awareness among young Latinas and their families about opportunities and careers in technology. TECHNOLOchicas uses the powerful stories of Latinas from diverse backgrounds who are in technology fields and recognize the power of innovation to change the world. These stories allow girls to see and relate to real-life role models.
TECHNOLOchicas LiFT seeks to increase the number of middle school girls pursuing technology-related studies by the time they reach high school. Televisa Foundation and the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) launched the Technolochicas LiFT program in 2018. The program teaches Latina girls aged 11–14 computer science through in-person workshops and activities. The program’s webpage lists cities and sites around the nation that offer TECHNOLOchicas LiFT.
NCWIT AspireIT connects high school and college women with K–12 girls interested in computing. Using a near-peer model, program leaders teach younger girls fundamentals in programming and computational thinking in fun, creative environments.
TECHNOLOchicas also offers one-dayTech Parties in partnership with companies that wish to open their doors to Latina girls to foster curiosity and engagement with technology, encouraging them to explore opportunities for which they can apply a knowledge of code and technology.
In smaller rural schools, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education can face troublesome barriers. In our K–12 district of 730 students, we have many of the common obstacles, including limited funds, no extra faculty, and an already overloaded class schedule. These three join arms to block us from using any of the really cool programs we’d like to. Other institutions sing praises of cutting-edge programs and share their successes. Meanwhile, rural schools are trying to figure out how to educate equally deserving kids in STEM.
Google’s Kick Start challenge offers coders around the world the chance to develop and hone their programing skills through online-hosted competition rounds. The three-hour rounds feature a variety of algorithmic challenges, all developed by Google engineers so that students get a sense of the technical skills needed for a career at Google.
CovEducation, an online platform created by students from Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, pairs college undergraduate and postgraduate student mentors with K–12 students affected by school closures during the novel coronavirus pandemic.