Virtual model will serve as many as 5,000 girls internationally, and takes into account issues of accessibility to serve girls from the highest-need communities
Virtual Summer Immersion Program is the third virtual initiative launched in under a month by Girls Who Code to address the needs of young women during pandemic
New York, NY (May 13, 2020) — Girls Who Code, the international nonprofit working to close the gender gap in technology, today announced that its signature Summer Immersion Program would transition to be all-virtual in the wake of COVID-19. This is the third virtual initiative launched in under a month by the nonprofit to address educational needs of young women in response to COVID-19, and will serve as many as 5,000 girls in the U.S. and internationally.
“Half the girls we serve are black, latinx, or come from low-income families,” said Reshma Saujani, Girls Who Code founder and CEO. “Right now, these girls are among the hardest hit by the pandemic, and we’re committed to designing a virtual program that meets their needs first.”
The new virtual two-week Summer Immersion Program model takes into account issues of accessibility facing the hardest-to-reach girls—such as WiFi, hardware, and living circumstances. It also incorporates best practices in digital learning, including shorter days, live and asynchronous instruction, small group work and project-based learning, and office hours.
“Girls Who Code has been working nonstop to deliver on the promise of our programming for girls who need us most,” said Dr. Tarika Barrett, Girls Who Code Chief Operating Officer. “We’ve completely redesigned and redeployed our program, while keeping in mind the realities of accessibility for the communities we serve.”
Girls Who Code expects to serve 5,000 girls in the U.S and internationally. The application—open now on a rolling basis—is open to rising sophomore, juniors, and seniors in high school with no prior computer science experience.
The Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program is sponsored by 43 major companies and philanthropic foundations, including: Accenture, Akamai Technologies, AT&T, Autodesk, Bank of America, BlackRock, Blizzard Entertainment, Cadence Design Systems, Centerfield, CNA, Credit Suisse, The Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC), Electronic Arts, EY, Fiserv, Ford Motor Company, Goldman Sachs, HSBC Bank, Intuit, Johnson & Johnson, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Kate Spade New York Foundation, Lightspeed Venture Partners, MetLife and MetLife Foundation, Moody’s, Morgan Stanley, P&G, Pfizer Inc., Prudential Financial, PwC Charitable Foundation, Raytheon Technologies, RBC Capital Markets, Riot Games, S&P Global and the S&P Global Foundation, State Farm®, Software.org: the BSA Foundation, Synchrony, The Travelers Companies, Inc., The Walt Disney Company, Twitter, Walmart, WarnerMedia, Wells Fargo, and Xandr.
The launch of the virtual Summer Immersion Program comes on the heels of two virtual initiatives released by the organization to support girls and young women during COVID-19: Girls Who Code at Home, free downloadable coding activities; and Girls Who Code Talks, a free virtual video series for young women featuring experts in career counseling, college admissions, wellness, and more.
Since its founding in 2012, Girls Who Code has reached 500 million people through its work and 300,000 girls through its in-person programming–half of whom are from historically underrepresented groups in tech. The organization has 80,000 college-aged alumni. Its alumni are declaring majors in computer science and related fields at 15 times the national average.
About Girls Who Code
Girls Who Code is an international nonprofit organization working to close the gender gap in technology, and leading the movement to inspire, educate and equip young women with the computing skills needed to pursue 21st century opportunities.
Since launching in 2012, Girls Who Code has reached 500 million people through its work and 300,000 girls through its in-person programming. College-aged alumni of Girls Who Code are declaring majors in computer science and related fields at 15 times the U.S. average. In 2018, the organization was named the #1 Most Innovative Non-Profit on Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies list. Follow the organization on social media @GirlsWhoCode.