Co-creating programs: STEMing UP

Shopify x hEr VOLUTION

During my tenure at Shopify, I co-created the STEMing UP program with Doina and hEr VOLUTION, a Toronto non-profit revolutionizing the STEM industry by encouraging girls and young women to pursue STEM-based careers and promotes stakeholder’s involvement in the support of STEM education in Canada.

STEMing UP is a free 4-week course preparing girls and gender non-conforming youth for a career in tech. They learn to code, problem-solve, and think like a leader.

  • By the numbers

    Since 2018, we have equipped 159 youth with the technical skills to create 16 solutions for merchants, tackling real world problems.

    Program participants learn how to code using javascript and python. They also dive into business development, branding and marketing, UX design, artificial intelligence, and quantum computing.

  • Partnering with local merchants

    The STEMing UP program has partnered with local businesses, in order to provide real-world challenges for participants.

    Merchants provide technical and business challenges for girls to tackle. Client relations, business development, and pitching their ideas are all skills that girls develop by the end of the program.

  • Reducing barriers to access

    150 laptops donated to reduce technical barriers to participation.

    Every girl receives a laptop to use throughout the duration of the program and it is theirs to keep upon project completion!

STEMing UP Program Recruitment Outreach Video

  • From opportunity to real next steps

    71% of STEMing UP alumnae are further pursuing STEM education and 47% of STEMing UP alumnae are now working in STEM careers

  • Recognized globally

    16 youth participants won International awards for their STEMing UP projects.

  • Events & Activations

    The STEMing UP program evolved through multiple model iterations, as we adapted to a fully virtual program during the COVID-19 pandemic. As we navigated the changes in the industry, with remote work trending upward, we decided to keep the program remote, and open our virtual doors to more girls and non-binary youth across the province.