During their tenure, members of the Teen Advisory Board (TAB) have plenty of opportunities to represent TechGirlz and work together to encourage more girls to get into technology. Recently, some TAB alums had a chance to continue their work, by appearing on The Leadership Advisor Podcast, hosted by Kate Garnes.
The podcast shines a light on the typically unsung heroes who work with teen leadership groups. It offers tips, tricks, and motivation from teen leadership advisors from across the U.S. Kate, the podcast’s host, found out about TechGirlz after she was the emcee for the Women in Tech Summit (WITS). Kate loved what she heard about TechGirls and asked to speak to some of our girls.
Two former members of the TAB, Lauren Phillips and Lucy Minchoff, spoke with Kate individually, while Trevor Gardner, a current TAB member, spoke to her along with Danica Pascavage, the Philadelphia Outreach Manager. Take a look at some of the highlights from their conversations.
During her chat with Kate Garnes, Lauren Phillips, who’s now studying engineering at Johns Hopkins, talked about how her time with TechGirlz really helped her build her confidence and time management skills.
When she got involved with the TAB at the start of high school, Lauren wasn’t a public speaker, she “didn’t want to stand up in front of the class” when she started sophomore year. She ended up developing speaking skills through volunteering at TechGirlz workshops.
She also talked about how her experience with TechGirlz and on the TAB helped her recognize that it’s okay not to always have all the answers. She knows now that it won’t always be easy and that she might not feel that she always belongs at the table, but it’s always worth it to keep going.
Lucy Minchoff, who’s studying environmental engineering at USC now, talked to Kate about how TechGirlz helped her develop a passion for technology. She started volunteering with us in ninth grade and joined the TAB in 10th grade.
She loved working with the other TAB members, who she describes as a group of “young, ambitious teenage girls who want to break the glass ceiling.”
“It’s incredible to be surrounded by so many like-minded girls,” she told Kate.
The power of connection might be the most important thing Lucy has taken away from her time on the TAB. She says communication, connection, and curiosity will take you far. She’s excited to make new connections while she’s at USC and knows she’ll stay friends with her fellow TAB alumni for the rest of her life, as they’ll always have a connection thanks to TAB.
Current TAB member Trevor Gardner first got involved with TechGirlz when she attended a Python workshop in middle school. She fell in love with STEM after it and went on to attend 26 TechShops, plus a summer camp. When she went on to high school, she joined the TAB to stay part of TechGirlz.
Trevor gave Kate a rundown of what she and the other TAB members do. According to Trevor, the community is a key part of being on the TAB. The girls talk about how they can improve, set goals together, and generally “have each other’s back if they need anything.” Trevor calls being on the TAB a “sisterhood.”
The TechGirlz event that perhaps best showcased that sense of community was Codebreaker, during which we broke the record for the number of girls coding together in the same place. The workshop took place in a big room at Drexel. Nearly 100 girls attended in-person with many more participating in online workshops.
Trevor brought several friends to the workshops, who all loved it. “It was super cool” to see her friends, some of whom had never done any sort of coding before, have fun.
If you’re a high school student and want to continue to explore technology, learn more about joining the Teen Advisory Board today!