“If you can’t find a way, make a way.”
Srishti Pithadia is two time winner of the NCWIT Aspirations in Computing award in CT, a one time National Honorable Mention for the aforementioned competition, a HerLead Fellow, a two time recipient of the Silver ranking of the Presidential Volunteer Service Award, a one time recipient of the Gold ranking for the aforementioned competition, a recipient of the Xerox Award for Innovation and IT, a Golden Eagle Award recipient, and one of the Top 10% for CyberGirlsGo in CT. She is also the 1st place winner (and national qualifier) in CT for FLBA’s E-Business category, National History Day’s Junior Group Website division, and in eCybermission’s STEM competition. In addition to these honors, She received recognition for her efforts to impact people positively through her own organization, TechnoTeens and her involvement in School For Village as the head of the CT Chapter.
Tell us about yourself along with a fun fact!
I’m a junior at Trumbull High School, a software developer, social entrepreneur, and a natural-born go-getter. I’m passionate about working at the intersection of technology and social good, and I hope to use code as a tool to improve the world. Currently, as the Founder and CEO of TechnoTeens, I’m using my nonprofit organization as a vehicle for change in my town and state. In offering a variety of classes, a community of mentors and role models, and in working to lessen the gender disparity in computing, I aim to impact my community positively. Outside of building, coding, and teaching though, I’m also a huge singing aficionado, and I actually performed at Carnegie Hall once!
What # would define your life journey?
Favorite website / app:
Relating to technology, I love the MIT Technology Review, the Harvard Business Review, MLH, Adobe Illustrator, Dribble, Tech Insider, and YouTube. Outside of that though, I like Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Spotify, and of course, Netflix!
Someone who inspires you and knowledge they have imparted:
As cliche as it sounds, Elon Musk deeply inspires me. Not only is he a successful programmer, businessman, and visionary in the technology industry, but he’s successful in all of those areas in other industries as well. He’s made a difference and left his mark in whatever he puts his mind to, even if they don’t seem related. He has continually found a way to put his knowledge of technology to productive use anywhere he goes. His story teaches me the value of ambition, persistence, and sticking to one’s own guns.
Song that makes you want to dance:
“Hey Ya” by OutKast
Challenge you’ve faced and how you overcame it:
In my sophomore year of high school, I was beginning to shift interests from the software side of computing to hardware side. Robotics seemed cool to me, and so my curiosity naturally led me to a local robotics team of all boys who were, luckily, looking for another member at that time. Despite the fact that I knew Java, the coding language they needed for their robot, better than them, though, I was rejected. I was told that the boys thought it would be “weird to work with a girl”, and apparently their advisors saw nothing wrong with this reasoning. Although I know the member of this team didn’t have malicious intent, this experience served as my introduction to the gender disparity in the technological field. Rather than being put down by this experience, however, I made sure to put the effort in, learn robotics on my own, and now, teach other girls robotics as well. As for the robotics team, at their latest competition I heard they were told they weren’t “diverse enough.”
What motivates you to keep going?
Hopefulness, vision, and love.
My ideal job would be one where I have the creative freedom to build my vision, an enthusiastic and tenacious team, and a challenging goal to achieve with code. In my blood, I’m a creator. That’s when I’m the most in my element. Ideally, my future job will enable that part of me to shine, and to be harnessed to make a positive impact.
What knowledge would you impart to women in order for them to REIGN their lives?
I want women to know that they have everything they’ll ever need to succeed right inside of them. Nothing can stop them from achieving what they set their minds to. Even through the hardship, they should stay poised and continue to believe in themselves. Then, they’ll truly reign.
Learn more about Srishti Pithadia and TechnoTeens (www.technoteens.net):
Instagram: @srishti47 and @technoteensinc.
Facebook: @srishtipithadia and @technoteensinc.
Twitter: @swissxcheese and @technoteensinc.