The Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles have introduced a Game Design merit badge to help encourage its members to get interested in a variety of science and technology fields.
The L.A. Girl Scouts chapter partnered with the Women in Games International organization to create a curriculum for the patch. Girls will be required to program their games as well as design them, using software called Gamestar Mechanic.
The Boy Scouts of America introduced a Game Design merit badge last month, but it does not include the programming requirement.
The Girl Scouts’ version hasn’t been approved by the national organization yet, thus it is only available to Girl Scouts in the Los Angeles chapter. According to NBC News, it’s designed for girls in 4th to 6th grade.
The games industry has recently been more aware of the gender discrepancies in its ranks. A few months ago game creators took to hashtag #1reasonwhy to talk about reasons the industry doesn’t employ enough women, uncovering issues like sexism in some workplaces. A game design merit badge could certainly be one way to get more young women interested in programming and creating games as a career.