Tech Girls founder in Gladstone on the weekend
JENINE Beekhuyzen is nothing if not a forward thinker.
The Brisbane based author and businesswoman teaches IT to university students and recently set up a non-profit organisation called Tech Girls Movement.
Ms Beekhuyzen wants to encourage young girls in particular, to embrace technology and gain confidence and skills in the field.
She'll be in Gladstone for the STEM expo this weekend and she'll also be back later in the year to conduct a 12-week program with young girls that involves building apps to solve problems within the community.
"We've got some amazing young girls, (with) great ideas," she said.
"They're mind blowing ... they're awesome.
"They don't have the same barriers we do, you give them some tools they can take to a new level."
Jenine grew up in Ipswich, inland from Brisbane, and said she understands the challenges living in regional communities presents to young people.
I wanted to get out (of Ipswich) I didn't see any opportunities at all," she said.
"(We need to find) ways of getting young people being happy to be local; making a great ecosystem."
Jenine said she wants to increase young people's digital literacy "beyond apps".
"Coding is a big deal now, but in five years 50 per cent of those jobs will be automated," she said.
Young people need help to keep up and Jenine wants to be one of the ones providing that help.
Catch Jenine at the Glad-Stem Innovation & Technology Expo, April 21, 10am-2pm at the GECC.
The event is presented by Gladstone Regional Council and entry is by gold coin donation.