ChickTech: Portland

ChickTech was founded in Portland, Oregon in 2012. Our oldest program site has made a big impact for people of all genders, with a focus on providing free and low-cost tech workshops and networking events for women, girls, and non-binary people of all ages.

Learn more about ChickTech’s vision and mission here and more about our inclusion policies here.

Our Programs

ChickTech’s first workshops were held in Portland, where we provided free, hands-on tech workshops and community building for high school girls. Today, our work has expanded to serve hundreds of girls and non-binary high school students in the Portland metro area each year and more recently has included offering free and low-cost skill building workshops for adults of all genders (with a focus on the needs of women and non-binary adults), and the expansion of our multigenerational, supportive ACT-W (Advancing the Careers of Technical Women) community. Whenever possible, we partner with other local organizations and companies to increase our impact and support the tech industry.

For Students

ChickTech: High School is our signature program, which helps hundreds of girls in the Portland metro area every year discover an interest in STEM skills and industries. ChickTech “cohorts” — most of whom have no previous experience in technology or have never really considered taking the technology path — are nominated by their teachers and invited to participate in a kickoff event and monthly workshops and mentorship opportunities.

Three high school girls stand in front of a presentation tri-fold board. One girl is wearing a ChickTech t-shirt.

ChickTech Portland high school students show off their tech creations at the 2013 Kickoff Tech Showcase.

All our workshops are hands-on and project-based so that participants come out of each with a sense of accomplishment and a burst of confidence. They remain engaged and learn through follow-up workshops throughout the year. Offerings have included:

  • Robotics
  • Website development/design
  • 3D printing
  • College and alternative education support
  • Videography and audio editing skills
  • Soft circuits and wearable tech

Our program provides a fun, positive learning experience designed to build participants’ confidence in their technical abilities, give them positive role models, create connections with other young women and non-binary youth from the Portland metro area, and create a positive association with technology creation.

Learn more Register or Nominate a Student

For Adults
11 ChickTech: Raleigh-Durham volunteers in gray ChickTech shirts pose standing on a balcony in front of red flowers.

Hundreds of adults of all genders in tech joined us for our 2018 ACT-W Conference in Portland, Oregon: Accelerating Tech with Diversity.

Advancing the Careers of Technical Women (ACT-W) provides programming for people of all genders, ages, and types of careers. With a focus on the needs of women and non-binary people, ACT-W events help support technologists currently working in the industry, give students confidence if they are thinking about going into tech, and help us all tap into a unique network of intelligent, amazing people who believe in the ChickTech mission. The program includes a wide range of offerings: from ACT-W+, our online membership platform, to conferences, hands-on workshops, and networking events.

Since 2012, ChickTech: Portland has held over 80 events for adults in technology, including casual meet-up and networking opportunities, conferences, community discussions, and technology workshops. Past events have included:

  • Imposter Syndrome Workshop
  • Personal Branding: You and Your Organization
  • ChickTech: College Social Hour
  • 3D Printing Class Series
  • Agile Scrum Workshop
  • STEM Educators Happy Hour
  • Different on the Inside: Neurodiversity at Work

Our adult events are open to people of all genders, backgrounds, and skillsets. We encourage people who are new to tech (or are thinking about learning new tech skills or entering a tech career) to join us, too!

Learn more View upcoming events

Get involved with ChickTech: Portland



Help empower women, girls, and non-binary people of all ages in tech! Learn more about what volunteer needs we currently have and sign up to support ChickTech’s program and mission.

View opportunities


Help fund our work! As a nonprofit, we’re always looking for donations to keep our events and programs low-cost or free. If you’d like to support our mission in Portland, please donate.

Make a donation


Whether it’s as simple as spreading the word or as big as making a donation, your company can give back to your community and accomplish your diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.

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Become a Member

Become an ACT-W Member to access career, diversity & tech webinars and to join our supportive community of women, non-binary people, and allies in tech.

Register for free

ChickTech: Portland Accomplishments

Two girls in ChickTech t-shirts smile while looking at colorful small robots. One of the robots looks like a giraffe.

Students at the 2013 Portland ChickTech: High School Kickoff event created fun robots that they programmed to do specific tasks and movements.

Our post-program survey from 2018 showed that ChickTech participants report significant gains in their technical skills, problem-solving abilities, and sense of support. 90% of youth who reported low confidence in technical skills prior to ChickTech report an increased confidence in their technical skills. 85% of our participants are likely to recommend ChickTech: High School programming to their friends.

“I had a really fun time at ChickTech and it opened my eyes to a career in engineering which was something I had not thought a lot about before. My favorite part was the fact that we were able to make things that we could bring home and show family and friends. I did 3D printing which was very interesting and fun to me. I always recommend ChickTech to my friends and I hope to get the chance to go again next year.”
Portland ChickTech: High School Participant

Thank you to ChickTech: Portland Partners:

Our Leadership Team

Linzy Rodrigues (she/her)

Portland Director, ChickTech

Portland 2014 High School Kickoff. Photo by Wojtek Rajski.