We asked four female programmers who attended Square’s Code Camp what innovative ideas they would pitch to investors and how Code Camp is helping them in their careers.  

By Jordan Hunter (Editorial Intern, Women 2.0)

If you could pitch an idea for a new product, app or service to investors, what would it be? We can’t wait to hear the pitches at our PITCH competition, so we asked college programmers a few questions about what ideas they have and what their experience was like at Square’s Code Camp.

If you had to pitch an idea for a new product, app or service to investors, what would it be?

Hannah Kerner

“Secondary Scientific Payloads for Commercial Aircraft” –Hannah Kerner 

Monica Starr Feldman

“An app to connect nearby tutors with students in need of help so that students can get on demand academic help without planning ahead.” – Monica Starr Feldman

Stephanie He

“A wearable app for accessibility (allowing someone with poor vision to “zoom in” using wearable glasses on small information, and translating signs into a native language)” – Stephanie He

Tali Marcus

“I would like to see some sort of app which aggregates news sources to provide a complete and balanced coverage of current news stories.” – Tali Marcus

Why did you decide to enroll in Square’s Code Camp?

“A fellow student did it the previous year and when she came back she seemed 1000% more confident in class. I was envious of this confidence and struggled with the impostor syndrome and I thought Code Camp would help.” – Hannah Kerner, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

“I wanted to meet other women who are passionate about what they do.” Monica Starr Feldman, Wellesley College

“I wanted to meet other bright, technical women and to grow as a developer.” – Stephanie He, Princeton University

“The aspect of Code Camp that made me most excited to apply was the opportunity to meet people who could serve as mentors and collaborators, and provide inspiration and support to me throughout my career as a female programmer.” – Tali Marcus, Wellesley College

What do you like about coding?

“It’s like magic. I can literally create anything I want, out of nothing.” – Hannah Kerner

“I love that coding gives you the ability to create just about anything.” – Monica Starr Feldman

“I love building to solve problems. I like that coding allows anyone who can own a computer to solve the problems of many people. It enables people to be creative and have the ability to change the world.” – Stephanie He

“I love the unique motivation I feel when working on a programming problem. When working on a difficult problem I feel truly engaged and excited about trying different things to reach a solution. It feels more like a fun puzzle than hard work, and every time I figure something out, I feel a real sense of accomplishment and excitement.” – Tali Marcus

What was one thing that surprised you most about Square Code Camp?

“The level of skill and accomplishment of the other women.” – Hannah Kerner

“I was surprised that they treated us as if we were Square employees – we got to meet with Square’s executives, attend (and contribute to!) Town Square, and more.” – Monica Starr Feldman

“Square Code Camp taught me that even technologies that seem intimidating can be fun to learn when working with a good mentor or friend.” – Stephanie He

“I was surprised by how genuinely interesting, diverse and truly awesome my fellow Code Camp participants were. Code Camp reminded me that women in programming are just as diverse as women in any other profession – there is no stereotypical female programmer and each woman brings something unique to her work.” – Tali Marcus

Don’t miss 10 founders PITCH their companies to investors at our “How To” Conference September 30 – October 1!