Do you want to make a positive impact on your community with technology? Join our community for a 12-week long program that teaches young girls, like you, how to build a business and mobile app that solves a real problem in their community.
You will be guided through the program and learn industry-relevant skills from our community of over 300 mentors skilled in ideation, marketing, business development, user experience design, and software development.
The MN Technovation Girls program ends with a state wide celebration, Appapalooza, where teams pitch and demo their app to a panel of business professional judges, family and friends. The semi-finalists compete on a regional level, and finalists are selected to compete globally where they pitch to executives and investors in the hopes of winning seed funding and help to commercialize their app.
Many of our Appapalooza winners will continue to refine their idea and app and go on to compete in other regional startup competitions such as the Minnesota Cup Youth Division and Minnedemo and compete year after year!
In middle school, 74% of girls express interest in STEM fields, but only 0.4% of female college freshmen plan to major in Computer Science. This lack of participation in such an important and growing field has serious consequences for the future of technological innovation. If women aren’t represented in technology, your ideas, concerns, and designs won’t be included when we create the cities, cars, infrastructure, medicines, communications, companies, and governments of tomorrow. Teach a girl to code she can create anything she sees missing in this world.
2021 Technovation Girls Season:
- Registration Opens – 10/12/20
- Official Season Launch – 1/11/21
- Registration Deadline (for Students & Mentors) – 3/12/21
- Submission Deadline – 4/19/21
- Judging & Celebration – 4/22/21 – 6/16/21
- World Summit – August 2021
TECHNOVATION COMPETITION PARTICIPANTS & DIVISIONS
Participants– Teams of up to 5 girls in middle school or high school (up to age 18)
Commitment– 40-60 hours: 4 guided hours per week from Feb through Apr
Experience– No prior programming experience is needed
Accessibility– The entire curriculum can be accessed online
Junior Division – Students between 10-14 years old as of August 1 compete to win seed funding to bring their app to market and a trip to World Pitch Night in San Francisco to show off their talent
Senior Division – Students ages 15 – 18 years old as of August 1 compete to win funding to bring their app to market and a trip to World Pitch Night in San Francisco to compete on the global stage.
CORPORATE SPONSORED CHALLENGES
Some of our most supportive sponsors provide additional opportunities to inspire the girls in the program. Benefits include the ability to
- Meet outstanding Minnesota business leaders
- Practice your live pitch before Appapalooza
- Build understanding of culture and technology at leading businesses
- Receive additional mentorship and coaching
- Broaden your technology skill development
- Check out your competition
Below are the 2021 sponsored challenges. Find a printable version here.
CARGILL NOURISH THE WORLD
Cargill Women in Information Technology (CWIT) are partnering with Technovation[MN] to take on its challenge to incorporate Cargill purpose. Teams whose apps focus on nourishing the world (animals, humans and plants) will receive an opportunity to virtually present to a global team of senior leaders on Cargill’s Day of Development.
US BANK CHALLENGE
Incorporate one or more of the elements of the U.S. Bank Community Pillars into your mobile app to qualify, including work (e.g. workforce education, economic prosperity, entrepreneurship and financial literacy), home (e.g. neighborhood stability & revitalization), and play (e.g. arts, culture and recreation). Teams who are selected will receive the U.S. Bank Innovation Toolkit to help you clearly define your mobile app and an opportunity to virtually present to the managing committee.
ALEXA SKILL CHALLENGE: LIFE HACKS
Have you ever wondered “how does Alexa know everything”? How does she actually work? Or, why can’t Alexa do this for me? Well, Technovation[MN] is offering a chance to not only understand the game-changing voice technology but build an Alexa skill of your very own.
The 2021 Alexa Skills Challenge is an opportunity for you to create an Alexa Skill that has a positive impact on the environment, local community, or the world. Your skill can be in any category, as long as it has a positive impact! Participants will work with Amazon experts to set up their Amazon Web Services account and build an example skill from scratch. You will start your project with a working Alexa Skill that you can modify and build upon for your customized skill. In addition, Technovation[MN] has lined up Amazon experts to serve as mentors to each Alexa Skills team, providing specific expertise on the technologies used for this challenge.
For the first time, Technovation[MN] will be bringing both Technovation and the Alexa Skills challenges together. Both challenges will live pitch at Appapalooza. Similar to Technovation, the Alexa Skills Challenge will host a special event with leaders of Amazon in April to allow participants to practice their pitch in front of Amazon technology and business leaders
PAST REGIONAL WINNERS AND APPS
Get inspired by reviewing past regional winners and their demo and pitch video.
An excerpt from Tien VoNguyen, Technovation[MN] participant and Student Ambassador. Read her whole post – If not us who, if not now when – here.
Through Technovation I met role models already in technology and made concrete what I wanted to work toward after high school. Everyone I met along this journey showed me how to be unapologetic, to be unapologetically female, to be unapologetically intelligent, to be unapologetically assertive, to be an unapologetic leader. And now, I want to major in Biomedical Engineering, and work toward helping girls bridge the gender gap, particularly in STEM.