This Summer, CLHS graduate Hayley Grisez is running her second year of The IT Girls, a technology camp for middle school girls. In spring last year, CLHS tech services director and teacher Scott Storm recommended Hayley for the National Center for Women in Information Technology (NCWIT) Aspirations in Computing Award and won District Honorable Mention. This year, Hayley earned the District Award which also made available an entry into NCWIT’s AspireIT program. Thanks to NCWIT, Hayley applied, earned the chance and then won a grant for informational technology and its connection with the social issues of women in the workplace. With the partnering of The Lutheran Schools Partnership staff of Alicia Levitt and Mark Muehl and the support of Mr. Storm, Hayley created the curriculum, made a budget, made an entire marketing effort, recruited assistants for the camp, recruited participants, and covered all the details the grant demanded for a second year.
What was Hayley’s motivation? “I love technology and I enjoy seeing the girl’s eyes light up when they figure out the next challenge or know that they can do something techy”. The IT Girls easily got on board with Hayley’s excitement and the first year of camp was fantastic! This year participants will work with Scratch coding, explore Java programming and work with Lego Mindstorm Robots. Their big project will be working with circuits and conductive paint!
Through last year’s experience, Hayley learned the importance of having back-up plans and not letting the unexpected ruin the day. She is using this to plan an even better camp for this year. Last year’s camp and prep for this year’s camp “affirm my knowledge in the overall field of technology and my enjoyment for the field”. She also learned how to be a better leader. “Lead but not be a “know-it-all,” is what she shared. Phrase things so you don’t shut the girls down. The week “Helped me understand what good teaching needs to be.” It affirmed for her the effective teaching she has had in her life. Her dad (problem solving), Mr Storm (content from IT classes) and Miss Volmerding from St Peters (teaching strategies) all played roles in a week of fun and learning.
Hayley is looking to add more participants to this year’s camp and needs your help! If you know any girls that would be interested, encourage them to sign up! More information and registration can be found on the camp website: The-IT-Girls.com
Hayley will be attending Purdue this fall to study Engineering Technology Teacher Education and looks forward to growing The IT Girls!