Pop culture vs. Reality, aka #GWC

There was a time when the images of those on the bus below dominated pop culture. [Their image, as usual, was best captured by Tom Wolfe]. Who knew that the engineers who founded Fairchild Semiconductor were the ones who would bring great change to society?  Actually Gordon Moore knew.

Moore was one of those engineers. In 1968 he went on to co-found Intel Corp. Commenting in 1974 about the impact Intel and Silicon Valley would have, he noted, “I’d like to think that we were the real revolutionaries in the world [that year, 1968].”

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With respect to the subjects which pop culture chooses to focus on, as opposed to those with real impact, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

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An article by Kerry Close of the Sun Sentinel highlights the efforts of the Girls Who Code classes being held in Miami this summer. The Girls Who Code program attempts to inspire, educate, and equip girls with the computing skills to pursue 21st century opportunities.

The reality is that we are likely be hearing much more from those girls who are now learning to code, just not next reality season.

The complete article is copied below.

——————————————————————————————————————–

Girls trained for science and technology fields

By Kerry Close, Sun Sentinel – 5:18 pm, July 28, 2014

A few weeks ago, Valerie Fernandez didn’t know anything about computer programming. Now, the 17-year-old Pembroke Pines resident is coding an Internet game all by herself.

Fernandez is one of 20 Broward County girls participating in a program called Girls Who Code, an effort to combat the lack of women in science, technology, engineering and math fields.

Women hold less than 25 percent of jobs in those disciplines, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

“It has to be [because of] society’s gender stereotypes,” said Ria Galanos, the program’s instructor. “More often than not, girls wind up choosing the career paths that have been marketed and advertised to them.”

The seven-week Girls Who Code program teaches high-school girls computer science skills, including mobile development, robotics and web design.

This year is the first time the program — offered in four other cities nationwide — has come to South Florida, open to girls from Broward and Miami-Dade counties. The Broward girls, who had go to through an application process to participate, are taking classes at Miami-Dade College in Miami.

Fernandez is working on a computer game similar to “2048,” an Internet puzzle where players slide numbered tiles on a grid to combine them, multiplying to create a tile with the number 2048.

It’s a project that not only teaches her programming, but also reinforces her math skills. She hopes to apply the skills she’s learned to improve her high school’s website.

The program in Miami is the result of a partnership between Girls Who Code and Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic branch of Verizon. Each week, Verizon brings in a female executive to speak to the girls.

Beth Bailey, associate director of government and education at Verizon, emphasized to the girls that STEM knowledge can be an important skill in any career path.

“I hope the girls learn that if they continue to study hard and build on their STEM knowledge, they can pursue their passion, no mattter what is,” Bailey said.

Fernandez said her summer with Girls Who Code has encouraged her to pursue a career in engineering.

“I’ve learned not to be afraid to believe in your ideas,” she said. “Even if you fail in the beginning, you have to keep trying.”

kclose@tribune.com, 954-356-4705, Twitter @KerryClose

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– Photo by Taimy Alvarez, Sun Sentinel

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About Jorge Costales

- Cuban Exile [veni] - Raised in Miami [vidi] - American Citizen [vici]
This entry was posted in 2TG Favorites, Current Affairs & History, Science & Technology and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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