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Category Archives: girl geek

Though this was mostly an informal networking event, we were given a presentation on the STEM Ambassadors programme from STEMNET. This scheme puts those working within STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) disciplines, or with a passion for technology in general, in touch with local schools. Here they can find themselves helping to enthuse pupils about STEM, giving them a new perspective and perhaps an idea about what careers STEM subjects could take them into.

Anyone who is interested in becoming a STEM Ambassador should visit the website for more details and the chance to register.

 

HEY! Girl Geek Dinners are held on a regular basis in locations in Hull and East Yorkshire. Everyone who shares the group philosophy is welcome to attend. Further details are available on their Facebook page and by following them on Twitter at @HEYGGD.

Recently, I attended the first, of hopefully many, Girl Geek (York) Dinners held at Grays Court, York. There was a full house of people from a range of backgrounds and, after an excellent supper and lots of time to network, we were treated to two inspiring presentations.

The first was from Helen Harrop of Sero (and a million other enterprises, as anyone who follows her of Twitter will tell you) entitled How I Learnt to Love Numbers. Helen took us through her early influences and experiences with numbers and how she caught the computing bug. Helen expertly weaves her affinity for logic with her passion for art, probably because she instinctively sees the overlap between them. You can find evidence of Helen’s artistry including her doodles (the word just doesn’t do them justice) on Flickr.

The second presentation was from Mary Vincent of Green Star Solution. We were given a whirlwind tour of her many business interests, with a discussion on a host of green ICT issues including thin clients, cloud computing (potentially greener?) and data centre design.

The tag for this meeting was #GirlGeekY so it’s worth looking for other blog posts and Tweets about this event.

Yesterday, at the Girl Geek Dinner held at the Enterprise Centre at the University of Hull, attendees heard a presentation by Emma McGrattan of Ingres. Along with discussions about Software Engineer Barbie and whether men and women code differently (don’t go there), I was particularly interested in what she had to say about Open Source.

We had many IT students in attendance and she encouraged them to see getting involved in the Open Source movement as a way to get some real world experience, something to add to their CV and a way of finding what they were particularly passionate about within their discipline. We heard about Google’s Summer of Code and the opportunities it offered as just one example.

Could there be such enthusiasm for Open Source the UK in the future (as there is in the US) and could the OER movement become as popular?

Could we encourage student teachers and new lecturers (on post graduate certificate courses) to get involved in OER as part of their studies, contributing resources to some repository for which they could receive feedback or which could be developed by others? How much support would this need and who would/could provide it?

(My thanks to @iamhelenharrop for prompting me to attend this event.)