Riding on the success of the 2011 GIRLsmarts workshops, UBC CS graduate students Sarah Rastka, Anika Mahmud and Mona Haraty expanded the workshops this year to downtown eastside. The three coordinators brought a group of volunteers to the UBC Learning Exchange on Main Street and offer interactive activities to Grade 6 girls from East Vancouver schools. Participants learn to build their own websites using html and make their own games and animation using Kudo. Feedback from participants were overwhelmingly positive and parents were really appreciative of the proximity of the workshop location. Other than the workshop on Main Street, the coordinators also offered two regular workshops to another 120 grade 6 girls from schools in the Lower Mainland.
A big thank-you to Sarah, Anika and Mona for going above and beyond the call of duty to make the three workshops a huge success. The group and activities leaders, as well as the volunteers, deserve applause for working tirelessly to make the three Saturdays such a fun and enjoyable experience for the participants.
The success of the workshops is a product of the amazing community spirit of the CS Department. Other than the strong team of undergraduate and graduate student volunteers, department members Colleen Diamond, Carlin Phillips, Moyra Ditchfield, Hazita Harun, Mike Feeley and Tim Li helped with practice runs, website updates and registration.