9-Year-Old Coder Triggers Kickstarter Avalanche

kickstarter, stem, mackenzie wilson, women, gender, crowdfunding, rpgsMackenzie Wilson, a 9 year-old straight-A student from Stevensville, Maryland, started a Kickstarter campaign twoo days ago with her mom to help pay for a role-playing game coding camp through RPG maker so she can create her own game. The campaign reached its goal 20 times over.

“Ultimately I want to learn to program really cool stuff, but since I’m 9 I’m starting with RPG Maker because it lets me create something awesome without having to know how to actually program everything,” she wrote in the project description. (Her mom helped.)

The request was modest: To earn $829 to pay for the tuition. Her family would pay for the overnight camp aspect of the bill.

Mackenzie also wanted to prove her older brothers wrong. Her brothers won’t let her play role-playing games with them and told her they didn’t think she could build a game.

Her brothers are eating crow now, because little Mackenzie has raised $17,024 in just two days.

Mackenzie and her mom figured that while they were at it, they would use their case to raise awareness for girls in computing. Her campaign had the good fortune to coincide with the controversy surrounding female developer evangelist Adria Richards.

“It’s no secret there aren’t enough females in STEM professions so part of my Kickstarter campaign is aimed at raising awareness and getting girls thinking about careers in technology at an early age,” Mackenzie wrote.

“I want to create an RPG that isn’t too violent and isn’t filled with bad words, still has a good story line & cool graphics, but has shorter cut scenes, less menus & fewer controls,” she said.

We wonder if she’ll let her brothers play.

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