Think of the types of Girl Scout badges or patches and you’d probably come up with something similar to this list: Camper, Gardener, Cook, Naturalist, Athlete – certainly not Video Gamer or Video Game Designer.
Well, the times are about to change.
The Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles plan to introduce a video game designer patch before the start of the next school year. The chapter has teamed up with the Women In Games International (WIGI) to implement the program.
“We work with a lot of organizations in various industries to bring their experience to Girl Scouts so they can have different opportunities to grow and form in their developmental years,” Carol Dedrich of the Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles told ABC News.
Dedrich stressed that the chapter is working on creating a video game designer patch – not a badge. A badge is a nationally approved award. A patch is something that is tested out at the local level.
So how will Girl Scouts earn their patches in game design? WIGI has been working on designing a curriculum that would teach young women how to design and program a simple video game. In addition to the tech aspects, there are lessons in marketing and leadership. The program will introduce girls to various roles of team members in games, including programmers, designers and artists.
In 2011, the Girl Scouts of America introduced other tech badges, including Digital Movie Maker, Website Designer and Computer Expert.
And that’s ultimately the goal of the program, said Dedrich: to teach young women about different positions in the tech and gaming world, which many think of as male-dominated professions and industries.
“One of the things we do in Girls Scouts is show girls what is possible in their lives: If you can see it you can be it,” she said. “This is us exposing them to females in this industry, which has typically been a male-dominated industry. It helps get rid of those preconceived notions.”