We at Getting Smart love to see events like this happening because they are working to end the major disconnect between the market and the tech industry today. Women are starting half of the nearly 10 million businesses expected by 2018, but those founding tech-based businesses are a tiny fraction.
TechGirlz to Host Second Annual Entrepreneur Camp
Camp Designed to Encourage More Girls to Pursue Technology Careers and Leadership Positions, Give Them Hands- On Experience in Tech-Based EntrepreneurshipJuly 5, 2013 (Philadelphia) – TechGirlz, a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering girls to be future technology leaders, will host its second annual Entrepreneurship Camp in Philadelphia from July 8-12.
During the week-long day camp at the University City Science Center, 19 girls, ages 11 to 15, will go from idea generation to presentation of their prototype and business plan under the guidance of some of Philadelphia’s leading startup executives and developers. The camp is designed to address the fact that only 3 percent of all tech startups are led by women, according to the Kauffman Foundation.
“We had an overwhelming response of young women that wanted to participate in camp this year,” said Tracey Welson-Rossman, founder of TechGirlz and chief marketing officer at Chariot Solutions. “Out of the 19 girls participating, three are returning from last year and one is traveling all the way from North Carolina. We also have five returning instructors, all from the Philly Startup scene.”
Welson-Rossman believes that there is a major disconnect between the market and the tech industry today. Women are starting half of the nearly 10 million businesses expected by 2018, but those founding tech-based businesses are a tiny fraction. Pair with that the fact that women control 70 percent of online purchases worldwide, and the reality is mind-boggling.
“Young girls need access to hands-on science, technology, engineering and math education more now than ever before. And this camp is the one place they can get the experience they need to change the trend,” Welson-Rossman said. “The ideas and innovation we’ve seen from them already are incredibly exciting. I’m really looking forward to what they’ll do during camp.”
At a pre-camp event held in June, the girls had an opportunity to pitch their tech-based business ideas. Those that were selected to be developed by teams of girls and mentors include:
- Wuffy Puppy – Mobile app that locates fresh water/restaurants when walking a dog
- Spot It – Shopping mobile app
- Where’d it go? – Mobile app to keep track of personal belongings
- Famil-E – Mobile app to keep lines of communication open with family
- GB Athletics – Mobile app that tracks info on sports individuals play, includes games and profiles
Over the week of camp, they will be brought to life with the help of software developers from Chariot Solutions, Jarv.us, Cloudmine and Comcast, then presented to a panel of mentors and experts, including:
Kerry Rupp, Managing Director, DreamIt Ventures
Joanne Lang, Founder, AboutOne
Anita Garimella Andrews, Delphic Sage
Maria Collins, Real Food Works, Inc.
Gloria Bell, Philly Startup Leaders and Red Stapler Consulting
Cassandra Bailey, Founder, Slice Communications
Amrish Macedo, Predictis LLC, EchoMeter
Jumoke Dada, Founder, Signature RED
Ellen Weber, Founder, VisionMine
The Demo Day Panel will consist of:
Amy Larrimore, Foudner, Empire Builders
Mike Rappaport, Founder, Chariot Solutions
Donna Frisby- Greenwood, Program Director at John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Neelan Choksi, President and COO at Tasktop Technologies
Suzanne Mooney, VP/Director Retail Banking & Marketing at Hyperion Bank
TechGirlz Entrepreneurship Camp is being sponsored by Chariot Solutions, PACT Educational Foundation and The University City Science Center, which is hosting the camp.
“We are very pleased to be hosting TechGirlz Camp again this year,” said Stephen S. Tang, Ph.D., MBA, the president and CEO of the University City Science Center. “The STEM subjects of science, technology engineering and math are key to America’s future global competitiveness. By introducing girls to technology and entrepreneurship today, we’re positioning them to be tomorrow’s tech leaders.”
Interested media can participate in one or more camp sessions July 8–12, at University City Science Center, 3711 Market St., Philadelphia, by contacting Brian Loschiavo at (610) 592-4153 or [email protected].
About TechGirlz TechGirlz is here to inspire young women to shatter the statistics. Our aim is to help adolescent girls understand that a future in technology does not necessarily equate to “a boring computer job,” but instead transcends the cubicle into nearly every field imaginable. By encouraging women to participate in science and technology today, as well as providing a solid foundation of peers, mentors and positive role models, we hope to spark innovation, exhilaration and motivation in young women to become tomorrow’s tech leaders. www.TechGirlz.org