The team of eight from Portsmouth High School had an early start to get to Microsoft’s Reading Headquarters for the DigiGirlz event this week and were delighted to come in first place.
The inspirational event focussed on how to engage with all of the girls in order to capture their interest and educate them about what a career in technology might mean.
When tasked with developing a pair of gloves for, ‘The Internet of Things’, Managing Director of the Portsmouth High School team, Annalee MacFarlane, 13, confidently announced;
‘Gloves? We can do so much with that!’
Annalee’s attitude was infectious and the team worked well together on concept, research, development and presentation. Team members interviewed Microsoft employees to gauge their opinion on their ideas and how to get their MiTouch product to market. The end result was both creative and forward thinking.
The MiTouch product slogan of, ‘The future is on your hands’, summed up for the team what the day was all about and that these girls could, themselves, be the developers and creatives minds of the future.
‘I wasn’t sure how much I would learn today,’ remarked Isabella Adams, 13. ‘However I would definitely consider a tech career now.
DigiGirlz has opened my eyes to lots of different opportunities that I wasn’t aware of.’
Juhi Miah, 12, really enjoyed the day.
‘The day has been inspiring and informative but really so much fun at the same time,’ she said.
‘Being an all-girls school we are very fortunate as there is no such thing as a male or a female subject,’ added Head of Careers at Portsmouth High School, Mrs Sammy Davies.
‘Many of our girls go on to study mathematics, physics, computer science and design technology at A Level. Days like this are hugely important to show the girls just what careers are out there in a rapidly changing world. Business and education each have a huge responsibility to adequately prepare the pupils of today for the careers of the future and working together on such events is key to the success of that task.
‘Cindy Rose, Chief Executive of Microsoft, spoke to the girls about her career and work/life balance. Having four children also shows the girls that having a family and a career is possible even at the top. Hearing from all of the Microsoft working women – from the interns to the product managers and CEO – was inspirational and really made the Portsmouth High girls think seriously about technology careers. The team was thrilled to come in first place.’