Girls in Tech Summit

The Girls in Tech Summit is a celebration of TechGirlz’s 10th Anniversary with talks on technology given by girls, for girls.

TechGirlz was founded in 2010 and offers free, fun, interactive “TechShopz” led by industry professionals, leaders and students. The TechGirlz mission is to inspire middle school girls to explore the possibilities of technology to empower their future careers. The Girls in Tech Summit celebrates a decade with this incredible organization and the accomplishments of the many innovative and enterprising girls in the TechGirlz community today.

Attendees will be middle and high school girls with an interest in tech and entrepreneurship in technology. They want to hear from other TechGirlz on topics that will help them grow their skills, expand their knowledge, and inspire their future careers.

Our speakers will be exclusively middle and high school girls sharing what they have learned and built in the realm of technology on topics ranging from technology entrepreneurship, fun and games, and how it works deep dives. The goal is to inspire other TechGirlz and celebrate all of their incredible accomplishments together. 

Date: November 14, 2020
Time:  8:30 – 4:00
Location: Science History Institute
315 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(Directions)

Origin

The Girls in Tech Summit was inspired by the Women in Tech Summit, an event that has brought together women in tech for the last seven years. WITS has grown beyond a single event into five nation-wide annual conferences and into a community of innovators and leaders networked across many industries. I have had the privilege of standing on stage at WITS several times and sharing my expertise and experience with others. I have also attended every WITS here in the Northeast and have benefitted tremendously by listening to and meeting with my peers and people I look up to in the tech industry. 

TechGirlz are the Women in Tech of tomorrow and we should all be excited about the innovation, creativity, and passion they will bring. It was my hope to give the girls in the equally impressive TechGirlz community an opportunity to gather and celebrate being part of ten years of accomplishments, to speak to and hear from others just like them.

Audrey Troutt – Girls in Tech Summit Co-Chair

Speakers

Caitlin

For my science fair project, I built a robotic exoskeleton that helps patients who have lost strength or mobility in their leg to regain their range of motion, control, and flexibility. This apparatus attaches to the outside of the leg like an exoskeleton and uses motors at the knee and ankle to, like a physical therapist, help a patient perform basic activities or improve their flexibility.

This robot was designed with sensors connected to the upper thigh, knee, calf, ankle, and foot so that the patient’s movement can be assessed and displayed on a screen.

With these sensors, a computer could even analyze the patient’s movement and like a Nintendo Wii, transform the information it receives about the sensors’ positions in space into a video game. The edition of sensors connected to the robot could make physical therapy more interesting for child patients and encourage them to participate in therapy more often. Hopefully, this would lead to more rapid improvement. 

The inspiration for this robot was the work being done at the Rehabilitation Robotics Lab at UPenn. In this lab, students and scientists build robots that can help patients with therapy the same way that physical therapists do. They have built many robots that help children who have lost control in their arms due to Cerebral Palsy. Their robots help to regain mobility and flexibility. They use motors to power exoskeletons or robotic arms that guide patients’ arms in therapy. They help kids practice basic movements like bringing cups to their mouths or lifting objects. To make physical therapy more interesting for kids, they also transform basic movements into a video game.

Although I was totally inspired by the work being done at this lab by students and by Dr. Michelle Johnson, I wanted to incorporate a different limb. 

The main purpose of this project was to learn more about how I can combine my love of engineering and my passion for helping those around me. For instance, I like to think that my robots could someday help my elderly grandmother or young children struggling with a disability. After researching, I found that in the past decades, there has been a large gap between the number of physical therapists in the workforce and the number of patients in need of physical therapy. The population of seniors in the US is increasing rapidly and by 2050, is expected to double. It is also expected that stroke caused disability will become increasingly common. However, there will likely not be enough physical therapists to treat these stroke patients.

In turn, millions of disabled individuals will go untreated and never regain strength or mobility in their limbs in the coming decades. In order to compensate for this increase in patients, I feel that robot-assisted therapy can act as one solution to this problem and hopefully serve millions around the world.

My name is Caitlin Boland-Szura, I’m sixteen years old, a sophomore at Germantown Academy, and an avid fan of astronomy, robotics, and most of all, Star Wars. For as long as I can remember, I have loved to understand how things work. From dissecting a squid in my 8th-grade science class, to taking apart and putting back together with my bathroom sink, to meticulously following the patters of the planets in our solar system, I can’t help but wonder about the mechanics of the world around me. When I was a little girl, my favorite toys to play with were Legos and Lincoln Logs. In my family photo album is a picture of 4-year-old Caitlin, diving headfirst into a three and a half-gallon bucket of Lincoln Logs. Folded over with my head fully inside the bucket, I was too interested in finding my perfect piece to notice that my pants were falling down. I’d sit for hours on end building log cabins, Lego X-Wing Fighters, or models of my favorite Star Wars scenes. No matter how long it took, I’d never leave a project unfinished. No matter how many pieces I lost or mistakes I made, as my mom always said, every problem had a solution.

I’d like to think that I have the same attitude toward building things today as I did when I was four-years-old. However, hopefully, now I’d notice if my pants fell down. At sixteen, I have graduated from Lego sets and Erector Sets to the Arduino Uno and power tools. I enjoy spending my weekends in my garage workshop, which I call the “Cait Cave”, building whatever comes to mind. In the past, I have built a robot that pets a dog, a robotic arm, shelving units, model rockets, and my newest creation, five-foot-tall a snowboard ramp.

I have a passion for building things and understanding how the world around me works. I also love to tell others about what I’ve created and I love learning from other kids. 

Eesha

Imagine a world in which banks and top secret programs could never be hacked into, where computers could solve where computers could solve life’s biggest questions, and teleportation is the norm of travel. This dazzling, spectacular future seems like a pipe dream, but it is very possible with the power of quantum physics.

Although quantum physics by itself is intriguing, how does it impact the average person? Well, one of the major fields quantum physics is coming up in is in the area of computing. Engineers and scientists are looking into creating quantum computers, computers that are far more powerful than some of the most advanced supercomputers. Companies like IBM and Google have already constructed quantum computers, and everyone is starting to speculate about all the cool things a quantum computer could do. 

Quantum computers may one day have the power to revolutionize the medical field, drastically improve Artificial Intelligence, and solve immensely complicated problems at lightning-fast speed. They could model complicated data such as business and investment risk diagrams, simulate molecular interactions to create better pharmaceutical drugs, and solve difficult functions to accurately display weather data.

But here’s the thing-all of this is just speculation. At this point, quantum computing is still a relatively undeveloped field. So what are tech companies working on now in quantum computing? And when can you expect to get an iPhone Q?

In this talk, I will dive deep into quantum computing, including what are qubits, what is quantum entanglement, and tunneling. Technology is on the verge of making a quantum leap- and we can all be a part of it.

I am a freshman in Adlai E. Stevenson High School who has been coding since I was 10. I can code in HTML, Java, Python, and Swift and I am currently learning C++. Additionally, I am part of my high school’s VEX Robotics Club, in which I am the coder for the freshman team. I love giving back to the community using technology by leading TechGirlz workshops. Through TechGirlz, I am able to inspire young girls to fall in love with technology like I did. When I am not doing something with tech, I enjoy spending my free time by playing the piano, writing stories, and hanging out with my friends. 

Lillia

Your Career WILL Be Tech, So EMBRACE It Now (aka You Don’t Have To Be A Coder)

  • Pt 1 – My Tech Story – 3 short stories about “growing up” in tech entrepreneurship.
  • Pt 2 – Pervasive Tech – 3 examples of awesomely pervasive tech in our lives.
  • Pt 3 – Your Tech Story – 3 ways (opportunities for) GIRLS can GO! GO! GO!

Tech is inescapable. Embrace Tech to Move Forward – Fast.

Lili, aka TechnoLili, is a web developer and 6th Grader at Abington Friends School.

Lili moved to Philadelphia at the age of 5, and spilt her time working at BuLogics and STRATIS IoT and homeschooling, until she desired a more robust social and athletic program that was easier to achieve than with an entrepreneur mom. She selected Abington Friends School at which to matriculate and has been there for four years.

She is considering a career in medicine, with a focus on technology as a tool for medicine.

Lili wrote a book called The Scoundrel Scout about her relationship with her dog when she was eight years old and spent two years working to afford and hire an illustrator using technology tools. Lili has competed at the national level as a synchronized figure skater and is a passionate dancer.

Lili is an actress and once dedicated a performance of Point B by Sarah Kay to her mother. A version can be seen here.

Lindsey

I want to talk about the many ways girls are able to get involved in tech without coding. A lot of times girls feel as though computer science is solely being able to code on a computer. I want to discuss the interdisciplinary/ humanities components of technology. I could talk about my experience being in TechGirlz (workshops and TAB), different opportunities for girls to take part in (aside from coding), and even my personal experience in technology and what I would like to do in the future.  

I am a senior at the Shipley School in Bryn Mawr, PA. I have been a part of TechGirlz since 6th grade and have done many workshops as well as been a member of TAB since 9th grade. I am interested in pursuing a degree in Cognitive Science with concentrations in computer science and psychology. I hope to one day work for the FBI or in criminal investigation. It would also be neat to work for a company, as a CTO. Aside from these two careers, I would like to work in education and teach students, during grad school.

Meghan

We will have 3 to 4 girls from Lansdale Catholic High School’s FRC team give a presentation on the program of FIRST. In this presentation we will talk about how the program has affected us and also give an explanation of our robot and how it has competed throughout the season. All of our girls have been inspired through this program as we all have leadership roles on the team. Of our 4 possible presenters, we have our teams Co-Captain, our Engineering Lead, our Electronics Lead, and our Drive Train Lead. We really believe that FIRST has changed our lives for the better and we want to spread this knowledge to all the girls in our area. 

I’m a senior in high school and the Co-Captain of FRC team 272. I’ve been on Lansdale Catholic’s Robotics’ team for the past 5 years and it has truly changed my life. Three years ago I became a mentor for an FLL and FLL Jr. team and I’ve been a mentor through the program since. This year, my position on the team has been Co-Captain, Drive Coach, and Strategy Lead.

Sasha

This will be about how HTML and CSS works and I will show websites I’ve made, tips, and how to get started.
 

Hey there! I’m Sasha I am 13.5 years old and I’m half Hispanic and half Bangladeshi. I first learned about coding from TechGirlz in 2017 in a python event that I attended. I have been a frequent member of TechGirlz ever since. Since then I have attended a National competition in California with Coder Dojo for Scratch when I was 12 (Last year), I do coding with University of North Carolina Girls Who Code, I’m also president of my Public Speaking class. In my spare time, I enjoy doing Volleyball and Track.

I have done all the TechGirlz events and have learned HTML, CSS, Javascript, Python, Scratch, C++, Graphic Design, Rasberry PI and Audacity. I currently know how to use Scratch, Python, HTML/CSS and JavaScript. When I’m in High School I would like to be a student helper for TechGirlz or host events for TechGirlz.
I have done all the TechGirlz events and have learned HTML, CSS, Javascript, Python, Scratch, C++, Graphic Design, and Audacity. I currently know how to use Scratch, Python, HTML/CSS and JavaScript. When I’m in High School I would like to be a student helper for TechGirlz or host events for TechGirlz.

Sponsors & Sponsorship

Interested in sponsoring the Girls in Tech Summit? Browse our sponsorship packages, and email Tracey Welson Rossman (twr@techgirlz.org) to get started.