Shaping Youth Sponsors She’s Geeky: Where WIT & Wisdom Flourish

Update Jan. 9, 2017

Coming up…Jan. 28, 2017 my favorite “unconference” convenes called “She’s Geeky” which I’ve written about since its inception, with posts from 2007 and for years thereafter in a 2009 3-part STEM series and 2010 sponsorship and beyond…I highly encourage any and all to attend and experience the magic of no holds barred straight shooting, solutions-based “what ifs” with humanists and creative STEM & STEAM innovators talking tech, possibilities and problem-solving powerhouse thinking!

This year I’ll be at my own “mustn’t miss” event, my dad’s  94th birthday…And though I’ll be in eldercare mode, I’m hoping “the crisis facing America’s working daughters” surfaces with strong conviction as well in terms of how to reframe thinking around an invisible, unpaid workforce of senior level women stepping off their career tracks to care once again for others. There’s no “app for that” but we should start troubleshooting monetization and methodology to redirect emphasis accordingly at all levels of society, as this article on the ‘feminization of poverty’ rightfully points out.

So while you’re joining Kaliya Hamlin and the crew, put in a good word for those dedicating their lives to both ends of the age spectrum (wee ones to elders) to bring forth a fairness factor on the gender equity front that is NOT being discussed nearly enough. It’s past time for this conversation. Waaaaaay overdue. Keep me posted afar…

Original Post:

What kind of wit and wisdom flourishes at She’sGeeky?

W.I.T. as in Women in Technology and also wit as in the funny, guffaw-level humorous antics of tell-it-like-it-is attendees. The wisdom? From top industry pros to young 9 year old tweens converging in leadership to create ‘The Girl Effect’ up close and personal…it’s powerful potion.

She’s Geeky is an agenda-free, supportive, intellectual haven for girls and women  who embrace technology as a catalyst for world changing where you can goof around with the best and the brightest sans pretense, intimidation, or any semblance of not fitting in. Why? Because no one fits in and everyone fits in…

The UNconference runs the gamut of über-geek techno-speak to esoteric thought leaders thriving on like-minded souls. (updated list of proposed topics here)

It’s the kind of room where you can let out one of those sitcom snort-laughs and not even blush a bit; despite the fact that you’re surrounded by bigwigs, students, startups, and seasoned serial entrepreneurs ready pay it forward for the next generation of STEM leading ladies. (science, technology, engineering, math)

And laugh? Believe me, you WILL laugh.

You do not get this level of social clout in one small setting without the wit flingin’ fast and the commentary pithier than a Carville-Matalin debate…It’s rebel rules, baby. And these women rock. (Follow SG on Twitter here)

When I attended my first She’s Geeky and experienced an UNconference I was concerned I’d be a mere geek wannabe since I’m not a techie. In fact, my relationship with tech is on a ‘need to know’ basis…I’m more of a curious discoverer-explorer in the new media wilderness, stumbling on cool pathways and getting entranced by the evolution out in the field finding new horizons and trails. (think Dian Fossey meets Christiane Amanpour if you can go with that mashup!)

At She’s Geeky I ended up meeting a range of engineers, gadgeteers, researchers, students, startups, mom-bloggers, entrepreneurs and ‘she-roes’ like Beth Kanter with her thorough nonprofit blog who I’d been following since Shaping Youth was ‘born’ a few years back.

Frankly, all the ‘not digital enough’ concern blew out the window when I walked in the door. In fact, I left with some amazing lifehacks and solid friendships that had nothing whatsoever to do with tech at all. (Beth is in NYC this year working, sniffle, so she’ll miss this weekend, but she’ll be a guiding light from afar, no doubt)

Anyway, to me, THIS is where thought leaders emerge, affiliate, exchange skills sets, team up in new co-ventures, get funded and kick back with a cup of tea, energized by a day of transparency sans guarded gamesmanship.

It’s refreshing to plop down at a table and share ideas without feeling like one of those carnival ducks that get shot down for points. (and yes, Lynn Langit of DigiGirlz for teens 13-19 via Microsoft will be there!)

As STEM’s leading ladies emerge to the forefront of candor and conversation, the weekend sessions will take shape and morph into ‘whatever it’s meant to be’ as pro Kaliya Hamlin (aka Identity Woman) says when she coaches on logistics and how-tos.

I’m thrilled to support this work as a ‘Community Sponsor’ and hope our relationship expands and grows as fast as the UnConference itself has blossomed.

I’ll also be eager to meet another ‘she-ro’ at She’s Geeky on Friday when SVMoms Group co-founder Beth Blecherman (aka TechMama and on Twitter here) hosts a roundtable topic “Gadgets for Moms, How Moms/families Are Using Technology, Career 2.0 for TechMoms.”

Beth’s name and blog (what is it with all the power-Beths out there, not to mention my own MOM’s name!) has surfaced many times among Shaping Youth readers, for as you can see here, we both tend to ‘deconstruct the headlines of mainstream news without taking any study or data as a ‘given.’

For example, the recent NYT article “If Your Kids Are Awake, They’re Probably Online” seemed presumptuous and a bit skewed at best in conveying the data of the latest Kaiser Family Foundation report recently released.

Again, deconstructing in full context, I think Beth’s piece and also the brilliantly in-depth deep dive by Anne Collier of NetFamily News adds balance to help untangle the data and make sense of the study with important media literacy context.

Looking forward…

…No doubt befitting a room of futurists and thinkers eager to build a better tomorrow!

Girls In Tech Catalyst Conference (She Geek Week!)

She’s Geeky Wiki With a few proposed Unconference topics

She’s Geeky Blog With Updated Events

Related Posts About She’s Geeky On Shaping Youth

Wise Women & Alice 3.0: Geek Chic For Girls (pt.1)

BrainCake: Teen Girls Talk Tech & Worldchanging (pt.2)

DigiGirlz: Teen Girls Build Community Online & Off (pt.3)

She’s Geeky 2009: Techno Leaders Converge

She’s Geeky 2007: Vlogging with Ryanne Hodson at She’s Geeky

Media Moms, Engineers, Purple Tornadoes At She’s Geeky

She’s Geeky and Proud of It  (My first Shaping Youth geekery)

Misguided Media: Space station takes a backseat to Britney?

Kids Online UNconference: Kaliya Hamlin, Joi Podgorny

Shaping Youth Interviews Girl Mogul Founder/Geek Chic’s Teen Link Love

Science Friday podcasts. Brought to you by NPR.

10 commandments of Being a Geeky Girl in Geeky Guy World

Nerd Girls – We are a growing, global movement which celebrates smart-girl individuality that’s revolutionizing our future.

Mind Candy Clothing – cute tees that let you show the world how much you love math and science! This just in: They have a sparkly BRAINCAKE tee!  Order yours today and show the world you’re a BrainCake girl!

Justine Magazine – an awesome magazine for “teens – real teens – just teens”

Instructables – the “World’s Biggest Show & Tell where people share what they do and how they do it.”

New Scientist – A great source for science news and science articles

Twitter – A fun way to stay hyperconnected to your friends through a free social networking and micro-blogging service that lets you update your friends with “tweets.”

Girl Power Fiction and Nonfiction Reading Lists – These great titles show that girls can accomplish anything.

Engineer Your Life – An awesome site for high school girls and the adults in their lives (parents, counselors, teachers, and other educators) who want to learn more about what life and work are like for engineers.

GMSP: The Girls, Math & Science Partnership…“A program of Carnegie Science Center,  conducts research in order to inform its work – whether it is creating this Web site or the most innovative programs for girls possible.”

She’s Geeky Description From Their Site

“The unconference format is unique. Beginning at 9 AM each day, we start with a blank wall and, in less than an hour, through a highly participative process, create a full day, multi-track conference agenda that is relevant and inspiring to everyone there.

When you come to She’s Geeky, you benefit from the opportunity to:

1. Build relationships and even partnerships across disciplines.

2. Learn something new from other geeky women.

3. Find answers to the questions that matter to you.

4. Consider business issues related to the technology industry.

5. Be exposed to new ideas for making and keeping technology relevant.”

Bring your WIT and wisdom! (And daughters, and nieces, and students, and scouts…)

Related Resources for WISE Women & Girls:

Girls in (Facebook group here)

Girls Are IT!


Female Science Professor Blogspot (insightful, fresh view from a  femme/STEM with humor and wit!)

Smart Girls Fun Blogspot (love the focus; link list alone has some worthy finds, like Little Shop of Physics, and some I’d never stumbled upon)

Wise Women–WISE Girls

Center for Women & Information Technology

Inspirational Women from WISE

Nasa Quest: Women of NASA

Women in Engineering Org

Fast Company’s Most Influential Women in Web 2.0

The Executives
The Entrepreneurs
The Gamers
The Evangelists
The Activists
The Bloggers
The Brainiacs


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