MBG Scholar Landri Drude at University of Chicago

By Michael Rosa

Before our incredible summer of learning kicked off, we introduced you to Made By Girls Scholarship winner Landri Drude. One of Landri’s biggest dreams in life is to be inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame like some of her role models, and her first step to reaching that goal was to learn programming at DMA!

DMA student Landri
Landri takes apart electronics with Jaap Haartsen (Bluetooth Wireless inventor, left) and Elizabeth Beattie Hunter (Titan Arm inventor, right) at the National Inventors Hall of Fame!

We followed Landri on her journey with us in the Made By Girls Adventures in Programming class. Landri wants to be an inventor, and this is one of the first chances she’s gotten to formally explore coding!

Made By Girls Adventures in Programming

Our Made by Girls program is dedicated to empowering girls through technology, so Landri seemed like a natural fit for the program. Made By Girls courses provide a nurturing learning environment designed to increase confidence in coding and computer science for girls.

“My teachers and parents always say that there are lots of other 10-year-old girls who love STEM stuff as much as I do, but I just have not met them yet,” Landri says.

We’re happy to hear Landri’s summer experience at DMA proved her parents and teachers right.

“I made a friend. It was nice to talk to her when we had free time,” Landri says.

2016 DMA MBG student Landri
Landri wanted to explore coding. At DMA’s University of Chicago tech camps, she got her chance.

Adventures campers are given two breaks per day (aside from an hour-long lunch). This lets them step back from the computer, make new friends and enjoy the summer season outside, which Landri was able to do on the beautiful campus of the University of Chicago.

In class, Landri discovered how to create video games and character animations using Scratch. Developed by MIT, Scratch is an award-winning programming tool that requires no previous coding knowledge, making it the perfect software for kids like Landri who have the drive to learn programming, but may not have had any prior experience in the field.

MBG Scholar Landri Drude sits with her classmates and instructor for class presentations of projects
Landri sits with her classmates (and instructor Irina Uk, left) during class project presentations!

Made By Girls classes are led by female mentors dedicated to serving as role models and building a supportive community for girl learners.

Teaching the Made By Girls Adventures in Programming course was the talented Irina Uk, who has a Master’s in Education (for Technology, Innovation and Education) from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

“I’m very excited to teach the Made By Girls Adventures in Programming course, and I’m very excited to have Landri in the group!” said Irina.

DMA student Landri playing soccer
A hard-charging maverick when it comes to STEM or soccer, Landri excels on the pitch.

Campers also had the opportunity to use software from DMA partner Vidcode, which focuses on project-based learning through creative art projects. That means Landri got to learn by creating! With Vidcode, she and fellow classmates developed motion-reactive videos using computer vision or custom video filters using advanced JavaScript.

“I loved doing weird videos and coding them to make them even weirder. I can’t wait to learn more tomorrow!” says Landri, while rocking a cool code T-shirt.

This class was just the beginning for future inventor Landri Drude. We can’t wait to see the incredible inventions she makes as she furthers her tech education!