Microsoft has announced that it will sponsor the CoderDojo Coolest Projects Showcase, an event celebrating standout projects completed in ‘dojos’ – free coding clubs for young people located around the country.
Microsoft has been European partner with the CoderDojo Foundation & Movement since 2015. CoderDojo and Microsoft are working together to encourage more young people to give coding a try and the company’s sponsorship of the Showcase, which will take place in the RDS, Dublin on June 17th, marks a continuation of this effort.
Fostering innovation and digital creation, the company will deliver a series of tutorials focused on Minecraft: Education Edition, an open-world game that promotes creativity, collaboration, and problem-solving in an immersive environment.
Microsoft recently committed to enable 10,000 girls in Ireland to engage with technology in a positive way over the next two years. Through this engagement, young women will be encouraged to engage with technology – through study, career or in their personal pursuits. As part of this effort, Stephen Howell, Academic Programme Manager, Microsoft Ireland will deliver a session on wearable technology and Paula Kiernan, ?Solution Architect at Microsoft Ireland, will take part in a panel discussion on Girls in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths).
Cathriona Hallahan, Managing Director, Microsoft Ireland said: “We are delighted to sponsor this great initiative by CoderDojo and are really looking forward to attending and supporting the event. Microsoft has worked closely with CoderDojo for many years and we are big advocates of its work, which we feel goes hand in hand with our own encouragement of young people to engage more with technology. Our research shows us that we need to do more to support female students in particular. 44% of Irish girls tell us that when they picture a scientist, engineer or mathematician, they still picture a man first. We’re looking forward to changing the way many girls and young women think about careers in technology and CoderDojo is an important partner for us in this work.”
Now in its 6th year, CoderDojo Coolest Projects Annual Showcase was created in 2012 by volunteers to empower the members of the CoderDojo international community to launch their creative projects. At the inaugural event, there were 19 projects and 100 attendees. By 2016, CoderDojo Coolest Projects had grown to the largest kids tech event in Europe with 700+ projects, from 10 countries and over 13,000 attendees.
Giustina Mizzoni, ?Executive Director, CoderDojo Foundation added: “We are thrilled to have Microsoft back on board again this year supporting our Coolest Projects Showcase, which is a fantastic way of celebrating the creativity and talent of Ireland’s young people. The growth in the scale of the Showcase over the last number of years is profound and the support of partners like Microsoft is critical in catering to this demand. Tickets for the Showcase are now available free of charge and we look forward to welcoming some 15,000 people to the RDS on June 17.”
Follow Microsoft Ireland on Twitter @MicrosoftIrl and for more information on the Coolest Projects Showcase, visit coolestprojects.org.