ProjectCSGIRLS in all Three Middle Schools

ProjectCSGIRLS in all Three Middle Schools
Posted on 05/19/2021
What began as an endeavor many months ago by two highly motivated and passionate sophomores at Montclair High School, has resulted in five teams of girls submitting final projects to the annual ProjectCSGIRLS (PCSG) international competition. Founded during the summer of 2013, ProjectCSGIRLS is a 501(c)(3) international nonprofit organization dedicated to closing the gender gap in computing and technology. Its unique idea of a technology and computer science competition for middle school girls stemmed from the fact that a large chunk of learning and development occurs during the critical middle school period. In today's world where technology is becoming increasingly prominent and essential to nearly every field of study, ProjectCSGIRLS aims to instill a love for computing and technology in middle school girls.

Buzz Aldrin Middle School’s PCSG club began in 2015 (then Mount Hebron) and over the past six seasons, has been composed of hard-working, dedicated, creative, and diligent students who qualified as finalists and/or semi-finalists in the competition. The team of Sylvie Wurmser and Ede Koehlert earned the school’s highest honor, finishing in fourth place two years ago.

This year, the PCSG club looked much different than before. Of course, all meetings were held virtually. However, two other crucial differences created a significant shift in club culture. First, Wurmser and Koehlert took the reins and led the club for the first time. They created the lessons and activities, managed each weekly meeting, and encouraged and directed a group of girls to compete in this year's competition, offering advice, mentorship, and supervision. Second, this was the first year that PCSG was open to all three middle schools in the district. Opening up the club to include both Renaissance and Glenfield was an idea that Wurmser and Koehlert have been proposing since 2019. More than 20 students participated in the virtual version of the club this year, representing all three middle schools. In addition, there is a representative or team from each of the three middle schools who submitted a final project for consideration by the PCSG jury.

“We are so very proud of Sylvie and Ede for successfully bringing this club opportunity to the district,” said advisor Dan Taylor. “We eagerly await the results of our submissions which should be announced in a few weeks.”

The PCSG club is not yet done for the year. There will be a final rally in the next two weeks, a meeting in which special guests will discuss the empowerment of girls in education and society, as well as STEM. Any and all MPS middle school girls are encouraged to attend this final event. Please contact Dan Taylor for details.
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