Summer Institute

Young Women's Design and Building Institute 2018

This week-long institute introduces girls ages 13-17 to multiple design and building techniques, skills, media, and a community of fearless builder women. From graphic design and screen printing to carpentry, welding, and architectural drafting, girls will explore the possibilities of building in their own lives, learning, and futures. This program is by application only, at no cost to participants if accepted, and limited to a cohort of 12 girls.

In a full week of design, building, creative problem-solving, and making in multiple media, girls will spend each day deeply immersed in a particular skill, completing the week with projects to take home. Girls will also design and build real-world projects for a community client (previous clients have included a local women’s shelter and refugee family support organization). Activities will integrate creative design exercises, technical skill-building, collaboration, and service-based design/build. Our work will be complemented by discussions and readings related to feminism, making, and community.

Each day will run from 9am to 4pm and will include all materials, lunch and snacks, a T-shirt, and a few surprise giveaways. For out-of-town attendees, we can provide financial support for travel to the Bay Area as well as placing you with a host family (though it is also fine to make your own lodging plans).


Institute Dates (please note there are two different session options):

Week 1: June 18-22


Week 2: July 9-13



Activities Schedule:

Day 1: Community-building, discussion, group screenprinting activities

Day 2: Digital design, basic carpentry, and laser-etching

Day 3: Overcoming fear: Welding, metalwork, and physical activity

Day 4: Visit to community client organization, design session, material shopping

Day 5: Build session and delivery of projects to community client


Application Schedule:

February 1, 2018: Applications open (apply online)

March 1, 2018: Applications DUE

March 15, 2018: Notifications of acceptances sent

April 1, 2018: Accepted participants must be confirmed and registered