PARK CITY, UT (KUTV) — A group of young women at Park City High School are looking to change the future of software engineering.
The Girls in Tech club at Park City High is raising money to host Utah's first all-female high school hackathon on Apr. 27 at 9 a.m. According to the club's website, a "hackathon" is a 24-hour invention marathon where students come together to learn skills and compete in a product design competition.
The members of Girls in Tech stated that they hope the hackathon will begin to close the gender gap in technology by exposing girls to computer science and giving them the skills and experience they need to be comfortable in whatever career they choose to pursue.
According to an article from the Park Record, Park City High students and club founders Sela Serafin and Claire Oberg started the club and hackathon because they noticed a disparity of young women in their school not gearing toward the technology industry in 2018.
So, they took Park City High's advanced placement computer science principles class - where they were two of four girls in the class - and began the club in the middle of last year, following the curriculum of Girls Who Code - the national nonprofit that aims to increase female participation in technology.
Since then, the now-20 club members have been practicing their skills until November, when Oberg and Serafin came up with the idea of the hackathon, according to the Park Record. Girls in Tech have began marketing the event online through the club's website and collecting funds through GoFundMe to help spread the news and gather the needed support to lift off.
All female students across Utah between 9th and 12th grades with any level of computer programming experience are invited to participate. Participants are required to bring their own laptops; and, if they are unable to do so, Girls in Tech will provide a laptop to those in need.
For participants that have little to no experience in computer programming, Girls in Tech will have workshops in session before the hackathon begins.
To learn more about the hackathon and register for the event, visit pchackathon.weebly.com. If you want to contribute to Girls in Tech's fundraising efforts, click here.
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