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Girls in Gaming

April 03, 2015

In an effort to change the underrepresentation of females in technology fields, Drexel’s Entrepreneurial Game Studio (EGS) has teamed up with the Philadelphia non-profit TechGirlz to develop a virtual game design class that will be available, free of charge, to middle- and high school-aged students and schools across the country. TechGirlz seeks to inspire and empower young girls and women to become tomorrow’s technology leaders with the hope of reducing, and eventually eliminating, the gender gap in technology occupations. The new curriculum, developed by EGS Director Dr. Frank Lee and his team, will provide students with a useful and engaging entrée into the game design industry.

Recent higher education reports have raised questions about the persistence of inequality in gender representation among college students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines in the last decade. Through EGS’s self-contained online instructional videos and educational materials, students will be guided to investigate how video games are made and how they can make them better, and they’ll be provided with enough coding knowledge to create their own simple games.

Through workshops and entrepreneurial summer camps, TechGirlz has been giving middle-school and high-school-age students hands-on experience with various kinds of technology for the last five years. As part of their workshops this year, participants will test the curriculum created by the EGS team. “We are very lucky to have a group like TechGirlz right here with us in Philadelphia,” Professor Lee said. “These young women are the types of students who will ideally be using our videos and materials, so their input is vital to making this a useful program.”

Click here to read CBS Philly’s coverage of Drexel’s partnership with TechGirlz.