Google is pumping some serious moolah into getting girls to code

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Made with code

You know things are getting legit when Google invests, right? Well Google is throwing some of its money behind a new initiative called Made With Code. The project aims to encourage young girls to get involved in coding by showing them that practically everything they love is made with code — geddit?

From movies to dances, music and the apps they play with on their mobile devices as well as sites they love: everything is made with code.

The site launched last week, which will be the hub of the project, housing resources for parents who want to get their kids involved coding as well as stories about various things made with code and role models for young girls to look up to. To drive this initiative, Google has decided to invest US50-million into the project with the hope of getting more women into Silicon Valley.

Last month, the tech juggernaut announced that only around 17% of its staff were women and it wanted to close the stark gender disparities in Silicon Valley.

“Coding is a fundamental skill that’s going to be a part of almost everything,” Megan Smith, VP of Google[x], told TIME. “So for kids to really at a minimum just be able to express themselves in code and make things and feel confident, that would be important — no matter what their career is.”

Google has assembled a group of prominent women and partners to help it get the project going. The Made With Code partners and community members include: Chelsea Clinton, Mindy Kaling, MIT Media Lab, Girl Scouts of the USA, Girls Inc., Girls Who Code and the National Center for Women and Information Technology.

The programme, according the search giant, includes an array of things that it hopes will make coding both fun and easy for anyone interested. It includes an introduction to Blockly-based coding projects, such as designing a bracelet 3D-printed by Shapeways. Girls will also learn how to create animated GIFs and to build beats for a music track. The collaborations with various organisations like Girl Scouts of the USA and Girls, Inc. will introduce Made with Code to girls in their networks, encouraging them to complete their first coding experience.

Google’s US$50-million commitment will support the program for the next three years. The money will also create support incentives that can help get more females into computer science, by rewarding teachers who support girls who take courses on Codecademy or Khan Academy.

The tech company has included a number of videos that highlights women using code to fulfil their dreams.

“We’ve also posted videos about women who are using code in their dream jobs, like Miral, Danielle, Erica and other inspirational girl coders — like Brittany Wenger, who is using code to fight cancer. And, we’ve developed a few steps parents can take at home to get their daughters excited about computer science.” said Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube on Google’s blog.

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