Written by volunteer Alison Perch
At TechGirlz, we believe technology is a creative skill. Tech is more than just coding, and there are an infinite number of tech-related fields and careers.
Grete Miller, a TechGirlz volunteer and creative professional, fully embodies this idea. Grete started out with an interest in musical theater and film, and she eventually developed a passion for producing and development. She has explored many creative avenues over the years, including stage managing, technical design, and film production.
Grete’s interests in art and technology led to her current role at Shutterstock, an agency that provides royalty-free images, video clips, and music tracks. She is also a multimedia storyteller and Certified Scrum Product Owner. Technology is now part of her daily life.
“From my stock licensing and product work, to making films, curating content, designing workflows, or producing a show, tech is all around me,” Grete explains.
Many people inspired Grete to pursue a career in tech, though Rebecca Pancoast, a scenic designer, stands out in her memory. When Grete was an actor in a stage production of “The Producers,” Rebecca successfully led a large crew and built sets under a tight deadline. This experience opened Grete’s eyes to new possibilities.
“I loved performing, but I was pulled in a new direction. I realized tools, tech, and design weren’t just for the boys! I could do it, and I could be the leader, too. It wasn’t until I saw it happening around me, that I knew that I was capable of doing it, and doing it well,” Grete says.
Today, Grete is providing that same spark of inspiration to the next generation of girls. As a TechGirlz volunteer, she has led TechShopz on video & podcasting, newsroom story production, mobile app development, and mapping for humanity. Grete greatly admires her students’ persistence, passion, and creativity. After attending Grete’s TechShop on videocasting, many students started using iMovie—completely unprompted—during their computer lab time at school.
“[Girls] thrive once they are given the chance to learn and do something new. I’m an even bigger go-getter now because I know my girls are out there and making it happen. It’s hard to get down as an adult and want to give up, when you know there are some spectacular students out there not giving up, no matter how tough it gets,” Grete says.
Grete encourages anyone interested to get involved with TechGirlz, particularly creative professionals. TechShopz in a Box™ curriculum spans many areas of tech, including art-based fields like UX design, video editing, and podcasting.
She notes that volunteering with TechGirlz can be a life-changing experience. “There is something magical about working with a student who knows that you really want to be there in the classroom with them. When they get to see you excited about your work, and then realize that you actually do this for a living, their eyes open up and they know that this job exists,” Grete explains.
Grete also has some words of encouragement for middle school girls interested in STEM: “Be proud of your work, and keep punching at that glass ceiling. It can be hard, but together we can carve out a place for ourselves and build more opportunities for women. We are one of the greatest resources on the planet. That’s a fact.”
Inspire the next generation of girls to become creative contributors and confident technology users. Sign up to volunteer today!