In early September, the Harker Programming Club hosted the second Girls Programming League Challenge, in which 100 girls from around the Bay Area took part in a coding contest and attended talks by a wide variety of guest speakers. The event was founded as a way to encourage the pursuit of computer science among middle and high school girls. Competitions were held for both novice and advanced programmers, and a total of 16 awards were distributed among the contestants. Teams of three students each were tasked with solving a series of programming problems within a two-hour time limit.
Talks were given by Chelsea Finn, an assistant professor of computer science at Stanford and research scientist at Google Brain, and Sharon Zhou, a Ph.D. candidate at Stanford University studying artificial intelligence applications for health care and climate change. A panel discussion also was held with Paige Bailey, TensorFlow product manager at Google; Qualcomm senior product marketing manager Sreeja Nair; Sue Xu, managing partner at Amino Capital; and Harker’s own upper school biology teacher Kate Schafer.