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When I was almost ending my sophomore year of high school, I stumbled across a post by Lilly Singh, formerly known as Superwoman on Youtube, that was raving about a coding camp founded by her friend, model Karlie Kloss. At the time, I had heard about computer programming, but never had the means or resources to pursue it. I went home and applied for fun, not actually thinking I would get into the two-week all-girl camp concentrating on Mobile App and Web Development. April rolled around and I received an email from Kode With Klossy that told me I had been accepted to their LA camp. I was shocked, to say the least, and so excited to learn something new that summer. Not only did I learn the basics of computer programming in Web Development that summer, but I learned about the amazing community of women within computer science that Kode With Klossy opened my eyes to. 

person looking at their phone while working on a laptop
Photo by Christina Morillo from Unsplash

That summer was probably the most influential in my life that shaped me intoto who I am today and what I value. I didn’t have any expectations towards the camp, and although I loved learning, the image in my head wasoffice-typetype space at a college or school. Instead, I was greeted with an open floor near the marina with computers provided, and lots of natural light and space tmy your own thing. There was such a diversity of girls ranging from 8th graders to seniors in high school. Additionally, the way they taught CS to us was completely different from school in my hometown, more inclusive to all learning styles and extremely lenient with extra time to understand. 

coding on a screen
Markus Spiske

Kode With Klossy advertised a community of women that are passionate about Computer programming as well as your own growth in leadership, relationship, and communication. That’s exactly what was given and it changed my life. I had never experienced anything like that group before and it inspired me to continue the growth and community that started there. In any organization I’m in, I encourage a community of strength through our common goals and interests. I truly believe that with a positive attitude, friendly environment, and the means to help everyone understand how beneficial learning can be to your life, anything is possible. I went to their camps every summer until I applied to be an Instructor Assistant this year because of my age. 

laptop coding
Photo by Christopher Gower from Unsplash

I encourage every woman who is interested in STEM to check out Kode With Klossy and their partners/ similar organizations such as Built By Girls and Superposition just to experience the joy that is an uplifting family of driven women by your side and turn that experience into more.

Olivia Garcia

UC Riverside '24

creative writing major - lover of books, Netflix, and being your truest self
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