By Angie Chang (Co-Founder & Editor-in-Chief, Women 2.0)
Today is the first International Day of the Girl, sanctioned by the United Nations. Coincidentally, we’re one month away from Women 2.0′s first PITCH Conference in New York featuring a full day of successful women entrepreneurs as speakers. Meet Alice Brooks, founder at Roominate where she make toys that get girls excited about math and science.
At PITCH Conference, Alice will be speaking on the MAKER panel of women entrepreneurs with successful Kickstarter campaigns – alongside Liz Salcedo from Everpurse, which charges your iPhone on the go, and Debbie Sterling from GoldieBlox.
Roominate started as a hugely successful Kickstarter campaign, raising over four times the asking amount. Part of the StartX Stanford student accelerator program, Roominate is the dollhouse that has working circuits and lights, to interest girls in engineering at an early age.
Fun facts about Roominate’s Alice Brooks:
- She wields powerful engineering chops - Alice graduated from MIT in 2010 with a BS in Mechanical Engineering and Stanford this year with a Masters in Mechanical Engineering Design. While a student at Stanford, she spent six months working at Nest Labs, as an engineer helping to design the learning thermostat.
- Alice grew up playing visiting her dad’s robotics lab - When she asked for a Barbie, he gave her a mini saw. So, she made her own doll! These days, Alice loves making anything from light fixtures to stuffed animals to strawberry shortcake in her spare time.
- Alice and her Roominate co-founders wish they saw more women in their upper level math and science classes - They designed Roominate to develop young girls’ confidence and enthusiasm for math, science, and learning through fun hands-on play. Roominate is crafted for girls aged 6-10.
A kit of building pieces and circuit components, children can use their creativity to design, build, wire and decorate her own unique interactive room with Roominate. The rooms are attachable/stackable, so girls can build expandable structures. The pieces are made to be simple and intuitive, allowing girls to explore and discover on their own.
After the successful Kickstarter campaign, the Roominate website now offers collections of Roominate products for girls to encourage them to become programmers, scientists, engineers and whatever makers they want to be.
Angie Chang is Editor-in-Chief and Co-Founder of Women 2.0, a media company offering content, community and conferences for aspiring and current women innovators in technology. Our mission is to increase the number of female founders of technology startups with inspiration, information and education through our platform. Previously, Angie held roles in product management and web UI design. Angie holds a B.A. in English and Social Welfare from UC Berkeley. Follow her on Twitter at @thisgirlangie.