She’s got style, she’s got grace and what’s more important is that she’s got brains. She’s a supermodel on a mission to inspire young girls to run the world through coding. She’s Karlie Kloss!
The 23-year old, former Victoria’s Secret Angel has walked the runways of fashion’s power houses such as Versace, Louis Vuitton and Balmain, graced the cover of multiple famous magazines, and a member of Taylor Swift’s #girlsquad. She even became a muse to John Galliano, a famous fashion designer, and starred in various campaign ads. You would think she’s just a typical snobby model chased after by the paparazzi while on a night out with her famous friends and colleagues, but that’s where you’re wrong.
Born in Chicago, Illinois, Kloss went through ballet training, which she credits as very helpful in developing her runway walk. But unlike other supermodels who got their shot to fame because of their connections and millions of followers on social media, she was “discovered at a local benefit runway show.” This young woman has talent so many other aspiring models envy, even Vogue Paris included her in their list of top 30 models of the 2000s.
Unlike most of her famous friends, there’s something extra special and very admiring about Miss Karlie Elizabeth Kloss. Despite her hectic schedule (traveling the world, getting her hair and makeup done, walking a runway here and there and posting a new likable picture on Instagram in between), she still has time to beat the deadline for her coding class.
She even gave up her Angel wings to pursue her love for coding. Normally, models quit school just to pursue modeling – Kloss did the opposite. Kloss just proves that models shouldn’t just focus on their looks but also on their brains.
Source: Kristen Arnett
It’s not new to hear a famous person being really smart but it’s not everyday someone famous is getting excited about her first day of school in NYU, restless with the thought that she could expand her brand through computer science and software engineering. Karlie Kloss is that kind of girl and she loves sharing her experience to all her followers – millions of them – on her social media accounts.
She initially took a crash course in coding and found herself in love with it. Later on, we see her talking about coding like it’s one of her obsessions. Last September 2015, she enrolled herself in NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. When she graced the cover of British Vogue last December 2015, she discussed her love for coding:
“Call me a nerd, but I love coding, the language of computers. Understanding coding is a superpower. I met some tech entrepreneurs and they are billionaires through learning this stuff. I’m so competitive with myself and I am fascinated by the language of technology so I decided to be part of the conversation… I think it’s sexy to learn this stuff; it enables and it empowers both sexes. About two years ago I started to think about what happens to me next. I’m a 23-year-old model and I want to think less about my looks and more about my future, and that involves my brain. I want to run companies, have a business future.”
Knowing that she can’t bank on her looks alone, she’ll use her coding skills to build an empire in the future. Isn’t that an amazing role model for all the younger kids out there? Speaking of being a good role model, Kloss is also inspiring young girls to code. With millions of followers in her social media accounts, she uses it to let the public know the importance of coding in today’s society. Now, she wants other women to follow her footsteps. In an interview with The Guardian, she expresses her opinion on the matter:
“I think it’s crucial that young women learn to code as early as possible to ensure that we as young women have a voice and a stake in what the world looks like.”
Source: Nylon Magazine
In an interview with Mashable, she explains why she launched her latest project, Kode with Klossy:
“Since taking my first coding class two years ago, I’ve learned how creative and versatile coding is… I decided to launch Kode With Klossy to help expand access to computer science courses and teach young women how to harness and apply the power of code to their personal passions.”
She also shared a message on her website, kodewithklossy.com, about her experiences as she took those coding classes two years ago:
Before my first coding class, the idea that I could build something with code seemed practically impossible. Within a couple of classes, I was working with my classmates to program a small drone. I realized that code is about creativity — just like art and fashion — and that women who have these skills have the power to shape our future.
Last year, she offered scholarship to 21 young girls between the ages of 13 and 18 in her Kode for Karlie Scholarship. This is in collaboration with Flatiron School. For two weeks, 21 girls were luck enough to immerse themselves in the world of coding for two weeks with other young coding enthusiasts.
Instead of just blowing kisses to her fans, she wants to let them know how important it is for women to be creative, innovative and inclined to computer science. Kloss embodies beauty and brains and she wants the young women who look up to her to follow her as well.
According to Amanda Southward and Leilani Jones, two lucky girls who were chosen to study coding under the scholarship, they wanted to take the step forward despite the stereotypes given to anyone who studies programming. Stereotypes include nerds, geeks and basically someone who wants to commit “social suicide”. But as soon as they started the 2-week course, they considered the experience on of the most wonderful they’ve ever had. The atmosphere inside the classrooms and workshops gave them the realization how important programming is in today’s society. Just like the person behind the scholarship, Ms. Kloss.
Together with Flatiron School again, Kloss is offering a new batch of girls a chance to learn the wonderful ways of coding through 2016 Kode with Karlie Scholarship.Last year’s scholarship program was such a hit that they had to accept new girls this 2016:
“I was truly inspired by all the applicants for the Kode With Karlie scholarship. Their depth, creativity and thoughtfulness is a testament to how these young women will change the world through code. It was incredibly difficult to select the recipients as there were many qualified and incredible candidates.” said Kloss in the Kode with Karlie website.
A full-time course is offered to all the scholars in teaching them the ins and outs of software engineering. By the end of two weeks, they learned Ruby – the awesome programming language used for big-time apps such as Twitter. As for the output each scholar must produce, they must build web apps together with their classmates.
Source: Flatiron School
In an interview with FLARE Magazine, she explains the need for young girls to embrace their inner geeks:
“There’s a big misconception that coding is strictly mathematical; it’s actually incredibly creative… Code runs everything around us, and young women are so important to defining the future.’”
All over the globe, the scholarship program has received 600 applications last year but only 21 were chosen. Out of those 21 girls, 14 had no experience in coding at all! But at the end of the program, a batch of software engineers came out of it.
Would you like to take part of this awesome scholarship program? Get ready for Summer 2016.
Aside from the Kode with Karlie scholarship programs, there are non-profit organizations such as Girls Who Code and Ladies Learning Code that offer programs for young women. These organizations aim to give women a chance to create and innovate through computer science and provide an opportunity to compete in a field usually dominated by men.
Through the supermodel’s enthusiastic posts about her love for coding, projects involving programming and girls, and scholarships, younger women are encouraged to be informed about the opportunities waiting for them once they pursue a career in computer science. This will also allow an opportunity to address the gender inequality issue in the workplace.
Source: Karlie Kloss via Instagram
Isn’t Kloss’ coding advocacy a refreshing view from all the other shallow posts from other social media ‘it’ girls? We’re hoping that the supermodel will inspire young women to develop their brains instead of doing shallow things just to get a few likes on their social media accounts.