Saturday, April 19, 2014

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Girl Scouts, Dell Release Initiative To Generate Female Interest In Computer Coding

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TWC News: Girl Scouts, Dell Release Initiative To Generate Female Interest In Computer Coding
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In an effort to get young girls interested in computer coding, the Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. teamed up with Dell to launch a new digital initiative that allows girls to make their own video games. NY1's Adam Balkin filed the following report.

When people think of the Girl Scouts, they likely think of cookies or badges.

Now, people may want to add video games to that thought process.

In a new initiative, called "Game On: Girls and Technology," the Girl Scouts are teaming up with Dell to draw young girls into the world of computer coding through video games.

"We realize although we're over 100 years old, we have to stay relevant for girls and families, and so, of course, girls are using technology on a daily basis, and we want to ensure them that we're here to support them in that activity. For girls and boys, game applications are something they use everyday. But for girls, we want them to understand that there's a whole science behind it, technology, and even some engineering and some math," says Girl Scouts of the USA CEO Anna Maria Chavez.

At the "Game On" website, girls jump in and create their own video games, which feature mostly girls as the lead characters.

The game they create is then there for them to play or to share with others.

Though girls may be just as comfortable as boys when it comes to using computers, phones and tablets, some women who work in technology say it's still a very boy-centric world behind the scenes of all that tech.

"By 2020, every job in the world is going to have some sort of technology component to it, and we want girls to be exposed, engaged and involved in technology from early on," says Michele Glaze from Dell.

Some Girl Scouts certainly seem up for that.

"I like the fact that you can make something out of almost nothing, and it teaches you how to code and put something together at such a young age," says one girl scout.

"I've kinda always wanted to be an engineer, so now this is getting me more interested into it," says another.

To check out the initiative, visit GirlScouts.org/GameOn.

For more cool science, technology, engineering and math opportunities for students in your community, head over to NY1's parent company, Time Warner Cable's connectamillionminds.com.

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