Sahana Sasikumar

Co-founder, STEMACA & Legion of Bot

Sahana is a 16 year old female role model in our community. She co-founded two non-profit organizations Legion Of Bot (focused on evangelizing robotics among young children) and STEMACA (focused on taking programming to under-priviliged children). Noticing a gender imbalance in STEM, she is working hard to close the gender gap in the STEM fields by conducting coding workshops at public schools and libraries in multiple cities. She has been teaching programming to at-risk girls in Kenya over skype. Noticing many girls with limited access to computers, she designed and built a board game called “Thaayam++” that teaches problem solving techniques and Python.

 

Last summer, she visited and launched STEMACA chapters in 5 schools in rural India, and conducted STEM workshops including python programming using our board game, Arduino projects and electrical-circuits. She also formed and coached an all-girls robotics team in India to compete in FIRST Lego League competitions. She conducts STEM workshops at multiple schools and public libraries (Fall City Library, Bellevue Library, Shoreline Library). Developed two robots, Tic Tac Toe and Sketch bot and participated in Seattle’s Maker Faire to inspire young girls, I have seen so many students getting imapcted through these creations. Working with other non-profit organizations, she co-authored the STEM curriculum including our board-game which is taught in 23 public schools in Federal Way, WA and Nigeria. This year, she has taught programming for 6 months every week over skype to at-risk girls in Kenya, who have escaped child marriages. Sahana has been mentoring at-risk girls at schools internationally, including India and Kenya, and motivates them to take STEM careers. Sahana has formed the very first girls-only team in a rural school in India to participate in FIRST competitions and she is coaching them to build robots and program them.

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