Liverpool Girl Geeks and FACT to launch The Girl Geek Academy this September at leading media arts centre FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology) on Wood Street in Liverpool. Girls aged 11 to 16 will get to grips with basic digital skills and web design as part of a free eight-week course led by Jayne Moore Media’s digital marketing specialist, Dolly Williams.

Currently only 17% of the UK technology workforce is female – the Merseyside-based Liverpool Girl Geeks is on a mission to address this gender gap and encourage more women into the technology sector and digital careers. The Girl Geeks Academy will give up to 15 young women the opportunity to learn basic HTML and web design skills. By week seven, each student will have produced a functioning website, which will be showcased to the public who will be able to vote for their favourite, with an amazing prize up for grabs for the winner. Applications to the programme are now open, and can be submitted until 6 September.

The Girl Geeks Academy will take place at FACTLab – FACT’s experimental space for collaborative learning and practice-based research – and will also address hot topics such as robotics and physical coding as well as taking on confidence building that will help the girls to build their own peer networks of support.

Liverpool Girl Geeks, runners-up at this year’s Merseyside Women of the Year awards, will deliver The Girl Geek Academy in partnership with Co-Op Digital, as part of a grass roots initiative in championing a better way of doing business for individuals and their communities.

FACT continuously strives to act as a catalyst for creativity across communities and the digital sector, and to engage with people in exciting new ways. By inviting people of all ages and backgrounds to get creative with technology at FACTLab, regardless of their previous knowledge of technology, FACT to encourages people to get involved, learn and develop.

Chelsea Slater, Co-Founder of Liverpool Girl Geeks and Managing Director, said:

“Founding Liverpool Girl Geeks was all about collaboration and partnerships, and we have been extremely fortunate already that so many people see the value of what we’re trying to achieve in skilling up the future digital leaders. We are extremely proud to have made this national connection to effect regional change in Liverpool. In collaboration with Co-Op Digital, Liverpool Girl Geeks is making tangible progress in the community by inspiring our young girls and we couldn’t be prouder of The Girl Geek Academy at FACT.”

Danielle Haugedal-Wilson, Head of Architecture at Co-op Digital, commented:

“Coop Digital is committed to supporting gender diversity in the digital sector. Only yesterday we talked about our support for gender diverse panels. One of the ways to tackle the gender imbalance in this sector is to educate girls and young women to show them the possibilities of working in technology.”

To apply for a place on the first intake for The Girl Geek Academy this September, go to www.liverpoolgirlgeeks.co.uk/. Academy sessions will take place at FACT every Tuesday from September 27 6:30pm-8:30pm, free of charge.