Verizon Innovative Learning, she says, whether the girls realize it or not, bridges the digital and economic divide. It’s also subtly changing the narrative for women growing up in a former coal town, and introducing them to new careers, like engineering. Leslie is grateful that the girls don’t have to leave Prestonsburg, like she did, to find and become supportive and tech savvy young women.
Middle school is a huge transitional period for girls, scholastically, physically and emotionally, and to have these girls uplift each other and develop self-confidence is pivotal to their development. “I feel like I can be better in a partnership. I’ve learned teamwork,” Sidney says. It’s not perfect, but I’ve learned to accept other people’s ideas and how to work through problems.”