uCodeGirl is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization designed to inspire, engage and equip young girls in the Fargo-Moorhead community with leadership traits, computational thinking skills, and entrepreneurial mindsets.
uCodeGirl strives to bridge the gender gap in technology so that young girls can confidently pursue 21st century opportunities.
By building confidence, enhancing skills, and tapping into curiosity, uCodeGirl helps young girls chart pathways to technology careers. With various age-appropriate enrichment programs and STEM mentorship initiatives, uCodeGirl makes technology learning accessible, relevant and fun for girls ages 10 to 18.
We are here to re-write that story.
uCodeGirl is a year-round enrichment program with a vision to incubate talent, unlock potential, and increase access to participation in the technology industry.
Girls are curious, creative and capable powerhouses. When they are confident in their abilities and are prepared with knowledge and skills they need, they can become leaders in whatever fields they choose.
As a college sophomore in Ethiopia studying Statistics, Betty was given the rare opportunity to be part of her school’s first-ever Computer Science program. She had never touched a computer before, let alone program one, but Betty said mentors guided her and helped her believe in herself, leading her to earn an M.S. in Software Engineering and go on to gain 23+ years of experience in the technology field leading numerous teams of software engineers.
However, Betty was often disheartened to notice that her teams were missing something crucial - women. That’s when she shifted her career and founded uCodeGirl - the innovative driving force behind making girls intrigued and excited about developing technology solutions.
Created to intentionally rhyme with the phrase, “You go, girl!”, the all-female-powered organization is full-heartedly committed to embodying inspiration and empowerment. Through year-round programming, Betty explains her vision of uCodeGirl as follows:
"We want to say to a young girl, ‘We will support and encourage you with mentorship. We will teach and guide you in acquiring technical skills. We will build a village around you and stand behind you through tutoring as you explore your potential and create your best self,’ so that the future generation is empowered with the skills and confidence they need to successfully navigate and actively participate in our increasingly digitally-driven world.”
At the core of uCodeGirl is access to skills and opportunity. At uCodeGirl, we not only teach technical skills, but we also create vast communities of like-minded peers. We invite young girls to come as they are and provide them with visible and accessible female mentors, enabling them to create solutions to real-world problems and engineer their world. Her call to action? "Join us to inspire and empower many more young women."
Betty has been selected as a prestigious Bush Foundation Leadership Fellow and was named the 2018 Fargo YWCA Woman of the Year for Science and Technology. Betty also currently serves on the Board of Directors for The Fargo chapter of the International Women in Technology Association and The Prairie Public Broadcasting Services.
As President of Entrepreneurial Learning Initiative (ELI), Bree Langemo leads the national strategy for partnership development. As Dean of Business, Public Service & Social Sciences at Pikes Peak Community College in Colorado Springs, Bree helped coordinate the roll-out of the Ice House as a required student success course with extraordinary results. This inspired the development of ELI’s newest product, the Ice House Student Success Program, a student success course that inspires and engages students with the perseverance and determination of an entrepreneurial mindset needed to succeed in school and in life.
Sandi has been in the technology industry for almost 20 years working in startup software companies, national technology consulting firms, and Microsoft. Today, as the Site Leader for Microsoft, Sandi and her team lead the Fargo campus, which includes working on initiatives to drive growth, carrying out site operations, engaging with customers & partners, developing employee culture & moral, supporting recruitment efforts across business groups, and running the campus’s philanthropic and STEM programs. Sandi has a Master’s in Business and is currently working on her Masters in Leadership. Sandi is a true believer that great things happen when people work together to achieve a common goal.
Dr. Nancy Hafkin has been working to promote information and technology in Africa and other developing areas, with a particular emphasis on gender, for four decades. She was Chief of Research in the program for women and development at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia— the first international program of its kind in the world. She subsequently headed the ECA program, Promote Information Technology for Development in Africa, where she worked to establish the African Information Society Initiative that promoted the importance of information technology to African governments.
The Association for Progressive Communications in 2000 established the annual Nancy Hafkin Communications Prize. In 2012, she was in the first group of inductees into the Internet Society Hall of Fame, in the category of “Global Connectors.” In 2015, she was received the UNWomen-ITU GEM-Tech Global Achiever Award. The National Museum of Computing in Bletchley Park (UK) features a poster of Nancy and her work in its new Women in Computing Gallery that aims to inspire more girls to take up computing as a career.
Carol is a designated Super Lawyer in the practice areas of Family Law and Alternative Dispute Resolution, and she received the 2015 Nationally Ranked Top 10 North Dakota Attorney Award presented by the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys. She is also involved with the North Dakota Lawyer's Assistance Program, assisting peers whose professional responsibilities are being impacted by mental health or substance abuse issues. Carol is a past chairperson of the Inquiry Committee Northeast, a facet of the State Bar Association Disciplinary Board, and a member of the Association of Trial Lawyers Of America.
Betty Gronneberg founded and is Chief Executive Officer of uCodeGirl and is most passionate about working with young women to forge pathways to careers in technology - making sure women are not under-represented in 21st century jobs and tech-executive positions.
Our Youth Advisory Council, uLeadGirl, is created to cultivate the youth in leadership roles, public speaking and team work through collaboration. The members of uLeadGirl champion the importance of participating in technology & innovation as future workforce; be an important voice in evaluating and providing feedback of uCodeGirl program implementations. The young women are selected to contribute to the mission of uCodeGirl, while acting as ambassadors and thought leaders in their communities for special events. They coordinate and participate in workshops, speak at events and represent uCodeGirl.