Girls Who Code club at Chandler high school looks to serve the community

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Community Cares: Girls Who Code club at Chandler high school looks to serve the community

In this week's Community Cares, FOX 10's Anita Roman showcases a renewed effort after COVID-19 to increase opportunities for Girls Who Code, a club for Hamilton High Students.

There's been a renewed effort after the COVID-19 pandemic to increase opportunities at Girls Who Code, a club for Hamilton High School students interested in the STEM field.

"Girls Who Code is an international organization right now that is aimed at involving and encouraging more girls to build the technology of the future," said club president Chloe Zhan.

Thirty girls are learning new coding languages like HTML and Python, and this year, they have numerous opportunities to use their skills to serve the surrounding community.

"I've tried to increase the community service of our club because ultimately, our technology, progress is meant to benefit society," Zhan said. "So that's really something I wanted to emphasize in our club, use coding to help serve the community."

Zhan is a junior and took over as president of Girls Who Code last year. After COVID-19, she brought back in-person meetings and expanded another popular program.

"We reestablished the coding boot camps in our local libraries, and we also collaborated with youth programs such as I Can to help teach disadvantaged students coding," Zhan said.

The junior says currently 18% of computer science graduates are women, and the goal is to increase that number.

"I actually joined Girls Who Code last year and I've already had an interest in computer science, but I wasn't sure what resources there were for me to learn more about computer science…and there is so much information [out there] that sometimes it's hard to figure out what are good sources," she said.

Girls Who Code provides resources, guidance, and most of all, according to Zhan - encouragement.

"When I first started learning coding, I took a lot of classes online and many adults in the online classes are in their mid 30's and 40's," she explained. "They said they regretted how they weren't exposed to computer science earlier, and that's something I want to change. I want more kids to learn about computer science so one day, they can become the future innovators and leaders."

The club has been hosting free coding boot camps at the Chandler Public Library, which introduces young girls to computer science through teaching them coding languages such as Scratch.

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