Karlie Kloss is one of the most recognizable, highest-paid models working today — Forbes estimates that she earned $4 million in 2014 — and now she's putting her money into a worthy cause: She's funding scholarships for young women to learn to code.
As Fashionista reports, the 22-year-old — who has modeled for Dior, Marc Jacobs, Gap and Victoria's Secret and been on the cover of stacks of magazines — took a 2-week coding class at the Flatiron School last year. In an effort to encourage other young women to do the same, she's offering 20 scholarships to girls between the ages of 13 and 18:
To be considered, all potential "Kode with Karlie" students need to do is submit a 60-second-long video telling Kloss why they want to learn to code in the same summer course as she did. Kloss will have a hand in picking the recipients, 10 of which will attend courses in New York City, while the other 10 will be spread across Flatiron School's other locations.
In videos posted to her Instagram account, Karlie explains why she feels so strongly about coding:
Code is only going to continue to play a major role in defining our future. I think it's crucial that young women learn to code as early as possible, to insure that we have a voice and a stake in what the world looks like.
She also points out:
Similar to dance and fashion, coding is a form of self-expression. It's a way to turn a cool innovative idea into a product, website, app or experience.
Karlie's not the only model who codes. Lyndsey Scott — who's also modeled for Victoria's Secret, as well as Prada, Calvin Klein and Gucci — told Business Insider last year that she started coding in middle school.Since then, she's graduated from Amherst with dual-degree in computer science and theater and has a couple of apps for sale in the Apple Store.
Recently, she gave a talk at a Women in Engineering Summit at the NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering in Downtown Brooklyn, where she said, according to AM New York:
It's still a shame that women in tech have to prove themselves if they aren't the stereotypical programmer… If they aren't, then there is this automatic tendency that people have to question their abilities.
Lyndsey posts information about coding and tutorials on her Twitter account, alongside smiling selfies. How cool is it that she and Karlie are both shattering stereotypes (does anyone still think models are dumb?) as well as inspiring young women to think about the future?