Barclays Event: IT Girls Allowed!


"Do or do not, there is no try" - Yoda

On Friday 10th November ten of our Year 9 girls had the opportunity to visit the Barclays Headquarters in Canary Wharf for the IT Girls Allowed event. We joined 12 other schools and participated in a jam packed day of activities from code breaking to programming robots! Our day started with an introduction from a Barclays’ employee who started at the company as an apprentice after she completed her GCSEs at 16. She now works in the department that handles online banking, fraud prevention and cyber security. Our girls learned about other careers within the company and were impressed to hear that Barclays are committed to encouraging more female employees to join their company especially in the male dominated technology department.

barclays1 Team briefing


The first task, “Design the Future Challenge”, was geared at designs that would affect our life in the future. Our girls quickly decided that they would like to incorporate technology within a wheelchair to help users in their everyday life. They worked very well collaboratively to decide on its unique name, features and benefits for the users.


barclays2    barclays4
Danna sketching the prototype   Girls listening to the team challenge instructions


On the second challenge, the girls leanrt about Cyrptography (code breaking) and they worked as a team to decrpyt messages. It was down to the wire when St Paul's girls and the opposing team both scored 14 points so there was a tie break. Thanks to Chelsea's knowledge of Star Wars and Yoda's famous quote: "Do or do not, there is no try", we were successful in clinching the prize for the second challenge!

After a spot of lunch, our girls participated in the Robot challenge where they had to program the robots to do a variety of tasks from moving forward, reversing and also coding the robots to use sensors to guide their path. Even though this might have been the trickiest of the three challenges, in true St Paul's Academy fashion, our girls were relentless in ensuring that they could program the robots to complete the challenge set. 

Overall, it was a fun-filled day where students learnt about job opportunites, team working skills, coding, cryptography and most of all the value of working hard and never giving up! Well done girls!!