Today, the WGBH Educational Foundation and the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), together with the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), have invited hundreds of female students from all over Massachusetts to celebrate the launch of Dot Diva, a new initiative to create a positive image of computing for high school girls. The launch event is being held at the Microsoft New England Research & Development center and includes an interactive fashion show, high tech music demos, an artbotics art installation, and local college fair. The Dot Diva initiative, funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF), is intended to increase the number of college-bound girls who recognize the power and potential of computing and computer science to achieve fulfilling career opportunities.
Dot Diva's mission is to create an exciting and positive image of computing for high school girls. New Image for Computing (NIC, a nonprofit managed by WGBH, conducted a nationwide survey in 2008, which revealed that not only do the majority of girls think of computing as "boring" and "hard," but they believe it fails to deliver two crucial benefits: "working with others" and "making a difference in other people's lives." The ultimate goal of Dot Diva is to transform this negative perception, and instill in young women a belief "in the potential of computing to build a better world."