On Saturday, June 17, 2017, EDCP Postdoctoral fellow Dr. Paula MacDowell successfully hosted an extremely innovative UBC Girls’ Makeathon. This equity-oriented event was designed to foster maker and coding mindsets in high school girls by engaging them with diverse media & technologies, materials, mentorship, and hands-on design experiences.
Teams were challenged to make an app related to an issue that teen girls face in local or global communities throughout the world. Participants learned how to identify a problem, create new solutions, and code for changing the world for the better. The teams communicated their ideas and apps by pitching to a panel of experts. Nine apps were created: 1) Animal Abuse in the Food Industry, 2) ReThink, 3) LitterBug, 4) Grow Your School, 5) SelfHelp, 6) EnRivalry, 7) WorksSmart, 8) WasteManagement, and 9) EthnicGO!
Fun and meaningful maker activities throughout the day included LED art, augmented reality, wearable tech, and upcycling.
UBC teacher candidates, engineering students, graduate students, and colleagues served as mentors in MIT App Inventor, ZapWorks Augmented Reality tools, and the engineering design process.
Special thanks to the event collaborators and funding partners: Dr. Stephen Petrina, Dr. Rachel Ralph, Dr. David Ng, Dr. Yu-Ling Lee, Yvonne Dawydiak, Celina Sewlochan, Alexis Lytle, Geering UpEngineering & Science for Kids. Special thanks to WWEST (Westcoast Women in Engineering, Science and Technology), and eng•cite (The Goldcorp Professorship for Women in Engineering at the University of British Columbia), which funded and helped plan the event.
Dr. Paula MacDowell is the Principal Investigator for the Makethon grant and research.