Girls and Computer Science

So, I name you two the “The Hooper Committee”. This was a sentence I uttered to the two girls in my grade 11 Computer Science class a few weeks ago. I wanted to try to make these two girls feel special and try to lesson the gender gap in my class that usually occurs. The title I gave these two girls, I explained to them, came from Grace Hooper, an American Computer Scientist and developer of the first programming language compiler. Every year I try to approach any girls who sign up for any of my Computer Science courses and tell them that they will always get special attention from me, as I feel it was brave of them to take a course they know will have such a gender unbalance. It is a fine line for me between making the girls feel special, safe, and welcomed into my classes – and being sexist, elitist, or too “pushy”. Having a daughter of my own, seeing the potential opportunity for women in the technology industry, and my appreciation for the bravery of these incredible women drive me to continue to support these girls in my Computer Science classes. That being said, they still have to do the work, learn the material, and of course, solve the problems! This article from Forbes magazine outlines a summer project in New York city where underserved high school girls were given the opportunity to spend the summer ‘coding’ and learning. Other interesting articles and resources for girls interested in Computer Science / technology include:

In addition, a documentary and project called she++ founded by Stanford university focuses on inspiring women to empower Computer Science.

2 thoughts on “Girls and Computer Science

  1. Pingback: Praire Dev Con meets Sturgeon Heights Computer Sciecne | Mr. Wachs' Classes…

  2. Pingback: University of Manitoba Computer Science Day – and first ever Computer Science fair champion from Sturgeon Heights | Mr. Wachs' Classes…

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