Girls Coding Camp: a Gold Award Project by Taleen Berberian

Taleen Berberian, a Pasadena Public Library Teen Advisory Board member, proposed and completed a Girls Scout Gold Award Project during the summer of 2018 at three library branches. The following is a summary project.

 

What is the Girl Scout Gold Award?

The Girl Scout Gold Award is the highest award in Girl Scouts. Open only to girls in high school, the Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls—and the most difficult to earn—and it’s only available to Girl Scouts. As a Gold Award Girl Scout, you’re challenged to change the world—or at least your corner of it. Gold Award Girl Scouts are making the world a better place. These young women are inspiring leaders whose Gold Award projects are impacting the worlds of STEM, education, agriculture, medicine, and more on a local, national, or global level. By the time you put the final touches on your seven-step project, you’ll have solved a community problem—not only in the short term, but for years into the future—and you’ll be eligible for college scholarships. –from girlscouts.org

 

Describe the issue your project will address and who is your target audience. Remember your 15-second pitch.

The issue my project will address is the gender gap between males and females in technology fields. It will increase the awareness for girls to code. By the end of each summer coding camp, the girls will build their confidence in addressing technological studies and will take a step further in learning how to code.

 

Discuss your reasons for selecting this project.

When I found out that I was the only girl in my Digital Game Design class, I decided to change the gap in my community. I spoke to many girls all over my school and community and addressed them the issue. They spoke to me about how they were interested but just did not feel confident in taking part in the curriculum. It motivated me to make a change and provide a camp just for girls. It will build up their confidence and create a lasting effect in their futures.

 

Outline the strengths, talents, and skills that you plan to put into action. What skills do you hope to develop?

I have many skills such as organization skills and time management but there are skills in particular which I would like to build on. For example, I don’t have much experience on team management. During this project, I will build a team, plan an event, and give instructions . I will also build on my public speaking skills due to the amount of people I will have to speak to.

 

Describe the steps involved in putting your plan into action, including resources, facilities, equipment, and approvals needed. (Attach a detailed project plan.)

The budget for this project will be very low. The amount of advertising needed to complete this project is more. My project adviser and I will start the project of by emailing schools in our community, attending other coding workshops, and planning an outline of what we will do. The resources will all be provided in the facility which the camp will take place in, the Pasadena Public Library. The equipment, which includes the laptop, must be brought by the girl and all the approvals are already granted.

 

Enter the names of people or organizations you plan to inform and involve.

All the people who will be helping out in my Gold Award Project are from my Girl Scout troop and the Teen Advisory Board of the library. The organization which I will partnered with is the Pasadena Public Library.

 

List out the overall projects expenses and how you plan to meet these costs.

The budget and expenses are very low. The equipment is provided by the library, but the laptops must be brought by the girls themselves. My family will donate snacks and water to this event.

 

What methods or tools will you use to evaluate the impact of your project?

Each girl will receive a handout at the start and end of the camp with questions of what they learned. The information provided in the camp will be very useful in their lives there on after. By the end of the project, they will have learned the basics of one high level programming language and will bring that knowledge further in their life using the courses available.

 

How will your project be sustained beyond your involvement?

Each girl will be given handouts on courses available for them at different resources. Therefore, if the girl’s take a step further in the technological field, they will receive economic benefits in their future and minimize the gender gap.

 

Describe how you plan to tell others about your project, the project’s impact, and what you have learned (Web site, blog, presentations, posters, videos, articles, and so on).

I plan to tell other about my project by presenting a slideshow to the Teen Advisory Board and Youth Network Committee at the Pasadena Public Library. I will give them a better understanding of what the Girl Scout Gold Award is and what their volunteer ship benefitted to.

 

Why have you chosen this person to be your Gold Award Project Advisor?

I have been volunteering at the library for a great deal of time and Jane Gov has been leading me the whole time. As of now, I am quite familiar with Jane and her abilities. This is why I came to her with my Gold Award Project. When I told her about my idea, she responded with encouragement and passion towards the project. We have talked several times about it and have come to a conclusion. Though I have worked with Jane multiple times, this is a very special project to work on. I am happy to be sharing my Gold Award experience with Jane Gov.

 

How will this person help you to have a successful project?

Jane Gov is very busy but she always makes time for things. From what I’ve learned about her, she has many skills such as organizational skills and time management. I have worked with her for months now and she has showed me how to be a leader and contribute to the community. Jane Gov leads many organizations of the Pasadena Public Library such as the Teen Advisory Board. She organizes activities for the library every month and has the ability to advertise it. Jane and I are capable of planning an outstanding coding workshop for girls all over the community!

 

How do you want to make a difference? As an advocate for justice? A promoter of environmental awareness? As a trainer, mentor, or coach? As an artist, actor, or musician? As a developer of petitions or campaigns? As an entrepreneur?

I would love to mentor girls into discovering skills they did not know existed. The idea of helping a girl do what she is told she cannot, encourages me to motivate them to do otherwise. As of now, I would like to take small steps in taking action in my community. Currently, I volunteer at a library where I can show children that the opportunities out there are endless. I want to make a difference by helping more children discover new skills everyday which can effect them in the future.

 

Now put it all together. Based on your thoughts above, explain the issue you’ve chosen as the foundation of your Girl Scout Gold Award project—and remember, 15 seconds. GO!

My potential team will be a group of volunteers I will gather from the Pasadena Public Library teen advisory board. I am going to target girls ages 10-14 years old in my community. Emails will be sent out to families in Pasadena subscribed to the Pasadena Public Library newsletter email and the registration for the camp will be on the Pasadena Public Library website. I will supported by my whole family and my Girl Scout troop.

 

Describe the issue your project will address and your target audience. (Remember your 15-second pitch.)

The issue my project will address is the gender gap between males and females in technology fields. It will increase the awareness for girls to code. By the end of each summer coding camp, the girls will build their confidence in addressing technological studies and will take a step further in learning how to code.

 

Briefly describe the steps involved in putting your plan into action, including any resources, facilities, equipment, and approvals needed.

The budget for this project will be very low. The amount of advertising needed to complete this project is more. My project adviser and I will start the project of by emailing schools in our community, attending other coding workshops, and planning an outline of what we will do. The resources will all be provided in the facility which the camp will take place in, the Pasadena Public Library. The equipment, which includes the laptop, must be brought by the girl and all the approvals are already granted.

 

What methods or tools will you use to evaluate the impact of your project?

Each girl will receive a handout at the start and end of the camp with questions of what they learned. The information provided in the camp will be very useful in their lives there on after. By the end of the project, they will have learned the basics of one high level programming language and will bring that knowledge further in their life using the courses available.

 

How will your project be sustained beyond your involvement?

Each girl will be given handouts on courses available for them at different resources. Therefore, if the girl’s take a step further in the technological field, they will receive economic benefits in their future and minimize the gender gap.

 

Summarize your project in 200 words or less. What did you do and why?

Due to the lack of women pursuing interest in technological fields, I decided to teach young girls in my community how to code the basics of python. Since I volunteer at the Central Library in Pasadena, I decided to start there. First, I spoke Jane Gov, the Youth Services Librarian at the Central Library about facilitating a week long camp for girls ages 10-14 years old. Then, I took the time to write a complex outline of what I would teach the girls everyday of the week. When my outline was finished, I practiced at the Central Library and started teaching! The first week was at the Hastings Branch Library, the second week was at the La Pintoresca Branch, and the third week was at the Central Library. About 8-10 girls showed up to each camp. As a result, they each learned the basics of python. At the end of the camp, they received a detailed resource booklet with links to online coding websites provided by the Pasadena Public Library.

 

Further describe the issue your project addressed, the impact you had, and who benefitted.

According to multiple websites such as “Observer”, I have come to the conclusion that there is an issue regarding women’s participation in STEM related topics. I connected with the Pasadena Public Library, gathered a team, facilitated week-long coding camps for young girls in my community. The goal was to get the girls interested in computer science at a young age that way through time, the gender gap in technological fields would diminish. Each girl also received a resource booklet at the end of the camp with links to coding websites provided by the Pasadena Public Library to further on their interest in coding! The girls which attended my coding camps benefitted from my Gold Award Project.

 

What is the root cause of the issue your project addressed?

There is no specific “root cause” to the issue although there are some theories I have come across. For example, I think the fact that the STEM-related clubs at my school do not have one female leads to the lack of interest in those clubs which are now known as “clubs for boys”. As a matter of fact, there are many statistics showing that STEM-related clubs in high schools are male-dominated. As a result, the technological fields in college are male-dominated. I hoped to build the girls confidence and their interest in STEM-related subjects, such as coding.

 

How will your project be substained beyond your involvement?

My project has many factors that will lead to its sustainability. I have created a video which will be posted on the Pasadena Public Library website along with a report explaining why I facilitated the camps. Apart from the video, I believe advocating and spreading awareness of this cause has led to a future where there will be a smaller gap between men and women in STEM-related topics.

Here are the survey results from the workshops:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1KuVnlo7wKVOJ31nKVcKPsOWB1Z58B2-LinvbCoFHFsw/viewanalytics

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