Coding & Cupcakes connects KC moms, daughters with programming

You might not find cupcakes at your typical user group meeting or hackathon, but at Kansas City Women in Technology's next event, the sweet treat will be the attendee's "coding fuel." KCWiT invites KC-area mothers and their daughters to join them for Coding & Cupcakes, a three-hour event to teach coding and website building.

You might not find cupcakes at your typical user group meeting or hackathon, but at Kansas City Women in Technology‘s next event, the sweet treat will be the attendee’s “coding fuel.” 

KCWiT invites KC-area mothers and their daughters to join them for Coding & Cupcakes, a three-hour event to teach coding and website building. 

The event is Saturday, July 26, from 9 a.m. to noon at the Sprint Accelerator in KC’s Crossroads District. One WiFi-enabled laptop for each mother-daughter pairing is required, and the only age requirement is that the children must be able to read, write and control a computer mouse. 

In preparation for next week’s event, we asked KCWiT founder Jennifer Wadella a few questions about the organization and its Coding & Cupcakes event: 

Silicon Prairie News: Tell us a little bit about Kansas City Women in Technology. 

Jennifer Wadella: KCWiT is a nonprofit organization aimed at growing the number of women in technology careers in Kansas City. We offer networking events and volunteer/mentoring opportunities for women currently in the industry, and do a lot of work with K-12 girls to encourage their interests in technology. 

SPN: How did you come up with the idea for Coding & Cupcakes? 

JW: I saw “Coding & Cupcakes” was done by Girls Who Code and Code.org in NYC for Mothers Day. I thought it was a great idea based on my personal experiences with CoderDojo. A lot of the girl attendees at CoderDojoKC have programmer dads who jumped at the idea and have been a great source of encouragement for their daughters learning technology. However, when I’ve been promoting CoderDojoKC at different school events the response I often receive from mothers is “my daughter wouldn’t be interested in that” or “that’s too hard, she’s never done coding before.” I wanted to find a way to change that perception by hosting a learn-to-code event that is very appealing to mothers who are outside of tech culture.

SPN: How do you think this event is different than other coding education meetups or hackathons? 

JW: We’ve done a lot of research to create this program. There have been several studies recently on recruiting girls and women in technology that reveal things shouldn’t be pink and girly. However, Coding & Cupcakes is a targeted marketing attempt to change perceptions of women who wouldn’t typically encourage their daughters to pursue an activity that has been considered more masculine in the past.

There will be a step-by-step guided tutorial with mentors available to answer questions during the lesson for any teams that get stuck. Mothers and daughters will learn side-by-side to discover the power of creation they have and the limitless possibilities.

They will also hear from female developers in the Kansas City community about their jobs and the passion they have for programming. 

SPN: Why should someone attend Coding & Cupcakes? 

JW: Someone should attend Coding & Cupcakes to learn that technology isn’t scary, that some of the social norms we’ve come to assume about programming aren’t true and that anyone can learn to code. It will be a fun event for both moms and daughters to bond and learn something new, and hopefully ignite a desire to learn more. There also will be cupcakes from local cupcake shop BabyCakes, that, in my opinion, are the best in the city. 

 

Registration for the event is free and interested attendees can RSVP via Eventbrite

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