First Name

Kelly

Last Name

M.

Bio

Kelly is a senior from Chicago studying at Northside College Prep. She began coding in a small club at her elementary school when a teacher suggested she join the Girls Who Code club at a local university. Though initially hesitant due to lack of experience, she joined. Four years later, she regularly spends weekends in the computer science department in the University of Illinois at Chicago. There, she graduated from the advanced level of the GWC program and now studies CS at the undergraduate level with the support of her devoted mentor, Edyta Dudek. Her time at UIC has fostered her love for helping others, particularly fellow programmers. She began working with students at her high school on minor coding projects, eventually forming a Girls Who Code chapter at Northside. She now serves as a President to the club and spends her afternoons teaching web and app design. Last year, 5 club members competed in the International Technovation App Challenge, placing as global quarter-finalists. Their app, Esperanza, provides certified, non-reporting mental health facilities to undocumented individuals. When she's not coding, Kelly is a passionate writer, runner, and mental health advocate. Kelly consistently updates her blog with creative pieces and has been published in several literary magazines. She co-captains her school's soccer team and likes long-runs at state parks. She has formed a mental health club at her school and regularly volunteers with the National Alliance on Mental Illness. She readily awaits the day she can make a global impact on the lives of others through technology.