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NMSU English department shares digital literacy through Girlhood Remixed Camp

  • By Minerva Baumann
  • 575-646-7566
  • mbauma46@nmsu.edu
  • Jul 09, 2012
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Part digital adventure and part identity exploration, the Girlhood Remixed Camp will provide a group of area girls ages 11 through 14 the opportunity to learn new skills. Starting July 25, New Mexico State University's English department will host the four-day computer camp, intended to help the girls develop digital literacy. The girls will create a variety of digital media projects including websites, audio podcasts, and movies to allow them to explore their "girl" identities.

"A number of research studies, including those by the American Association of University Women, suggest that it is during early adolescence that girls begin receiving cultural messages that technology is not for them," said Jen Almjeld, assistant professor of English and developer of the camp.

Through these projects, Almjeld expects students to gain critical awareness of digital media and its role in their lives. Participants will stay in campus residence halls to foster an intensive mentoring environment with faculty and graduate student volunteers.

The camp's goal is to create positive, creative experiences with technology for middle school girls in southern New Mexico through a blend of hands-on computer lab work in Web authoring, digital imaging, as well as video and audio editing. Women involved in technology careers across campus will mentor the students. The girls also will have access to resources like NMSU's Learning Games Lab.

The experience will wrap up Saturday, July 28, with an 11 a.m. showcase where students will share their work with family and friends.

"The camp is an excellent opportunity for community engagement on the part of NMSU women, faculty, students and staff," Almjeld said. "We hope this camp is a fun and safe space where girls can interact with adult mentors and other like-minded girls as they explore the ways technology impacts their lives."

Twenty-six students are signed up for the first year of the camp, which is funded primarily through a grant from the Hancock Family Foundation.