A group of Scarborough girls are getting an introduction to the world of gaming this summer.
Woburn Junior Public School near Markham Road and Ellesmere Road in Scarborough was chosen as a pilot school this past school year for the Girls Who Game program.
In partnership with the Leacock Foundation and Dell, the program focuses on encouraging girls to get into the world of gaming. The program was expanded to a summer camp through the month of July and includes about 30 girls from grades 4 to 6.
“We’re the only pilot school in Toronto,” said Annie Slater, the school’s principal.
“We all know that women are underrepresented in STEM careers but there’s a huge industry for e-gaming and eSports and it’s a multi-billion-dollar industry and woman are very, very underrepresented — in fact, even less than in general, all the STEM careers.”
The program hopes to promote an equal playing field while encouraging collaboration, creativity, citizenship and communication.
Nine-year-old Dhwani Patel says she has hopes of becoming a scientist when she grows up. Ten-year-old Saanvi Patel says she is planning for a career as an architect. Saanvi said she enjoys building houses, towers and even built a roller-coaster in Minecraft.
“You know the roller-coaster I made? When I grow up, I want to make it in real life so people could actually go on the roller-coaster,” said Saanvi.
Dell launched Girls Who Game in five cities throughout Canada but there are now plans to expand it.
“Because it was so successful, Dell is going to expand the program further from the five sites in this first year to 30 sites for next year,” said Slater.
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