Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Academy for female programmers: a model for our region?

From last month on GeekWire, a model for our area?

Hey, lady coders: Ada Developers Academy wants to turn you into an all-star programmer — for free!

Ada Developers Academy (Ada) is offering up a free, intensive 24-week class designed to teach women everything from Ruby on Rails to HTML/CSS to JavaScript. Once instruction is completed, students will be placed in a six-month apprenticeship with a local tech company to apply their newly-learned skills.

Elise Worthy, a Seattle-based developer, is Ada’s program manager and said she’s passionate about helping more women learn how to code.   “We’re really excited about our first class,” she said. “We’ll be directly addressing the gender imbalance in software as well as the pay gap in Seattle.”
Elise Worthy, Ada Developers Academy Program Manager.
Elise Worthy
Ada Developers Academy Program Manager.

Operating as a non-profit project of the Technology Alliance, the academy has already raised a good chunk of money from the Washington State’s Department of Commerce and local sponsors. But it is looking to bring in an additional $35,000 through an IndieGoGo campaign to cover costs like classroom rent and supplies.

Ada, named after one of the first programmers ever and Geek Madness participant Ada Lovelace, will still launch if the IndieGoGo doesn’t reach its goal. However, the program may be delayed and/or admit fewer students. The first cohort is expected to be around 15-to-20 programmers, but Ada wants to eventually graduate 80-to-100 per year.

If you’re interested in Ada, head here to apply. You must be a woman, not have prior programming experience and own a Mac laptop. Applications (were) accepted through Sept. 30 at 5 p.m. PST.

Reach staff reporter Taylor Soper at taylor@geekwire.com or on Twitter @Taylor_Soper. Follow us on Twitter @GeekWire.

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