(KMOV.com) – There is an effort underway to get more women into the technology field and satisfy a computer programmer shortage in St. Louis.
"Coder Girl" was an idea by Cultivation Capital's Colleen Liebig. The venture capital firm invests in start-ups in St. Louis. Liebig said she is familiar with the shortage of experienced computer programmers and decided to organize a class to urge more women to get into the field.
When News 4 interviewed Liebig about the idea on April 24th, about 20 people were signed up for the free classes. Since then, more than 500 have connected with the group to get information.
The first introductory class was held Thursday evening at the St. Louis Science Center planetarium. The next meet-up is on June 5. Classes will be held every Thursday from 5:30 p.m. - 8:00 pm through August.
"Mentors", female computer programmers, will offer guidance to aspiring programmers who will be asked to work through Harvard's free on-line program CS50x.
Students were told they will spend at least 20 hours a week on assignments, in addition to the weekly meet-ups.
Experienced programmers in St. Louis are in high demand right now as the region grows its tech jobs. Students who complete Coder Girl's program could then apply to the Launch Code program, which pairs new programmers with companies that are hiring.