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Five famous female coders that might just surprise you

Some career shifts can certainly be surprising and many may think a swap from fashion modelling to fiscal management might be impossible. But for these five females, being at the top of their game in performance arts and high fashion simply wasn’t enough, as we rundown their moves from runway to technology and science.

This list, compiled by international kids coding brand Code Ninjas, shows our young people what you can achieve with vision and hard work.


  1. Karlie Kloss

The star of over 40 international Vogue covers, Karlie Kloss is one of the most successful and sought-after models in the world of fashion. Since rising to mega stardom, though, Kloss has made a point of empowering people in ways other than just through the fashion and beauty pages.

Karlie learnt to code, stating in an interview with SheKnows, “I think many people have a hard time making the connection between fashion and STEM, but the two industries are becoming more intertwined every day. Given tech’s vast reach, it’s important now more than ever to teach the next generation vital skills such as code, because this knowledge is so widely applicable.”

Kloss even launched her own coding initiative in 2015, called Kode With Klossy – a two-week summer programme for girls aged 13-18 with an interest in coding. Some of those dedicated students have gone on to internships at companies such as Apple, Amazon and AT&T.


  1. Eva Longoria

Golden Globe-nominated actress Eva Longoria constantly stuns us with her on-screen characters and flawless style. One thing she is not as well-known for is her commitment to STEM education of children, especially of a group who have disproportionately high numbers of high-school dropouts.

The Eva Longoria Foundation runs various extracurricular programmes and workshops encouraging young people’s love of maths and science from an early age. To date, her foundation has helped more than 2,100 Latinas grow their STEM skills.


  1. Lyndsey Scott

Lyndsey Scott was the first African American model to sign an exclusive runway contract with Calvin Klein. Between modelling assignments for prestigious fashion houses like Gucci, Prada and Victoria’s Secret, she also writes mobile apps for iOS devices. Lyndsey has been coding since age 12 and is passionate about educating others to program, especially young women.

On Stack Overflow, a site where users gain a reputation for providing answers about computer programming, Lyndsey was the top-ranked user for iOS questions on the site for one month in 2015. As of 2022, she has over 36,000 reputation points with over 400 answers to user questions and is in the top 1% of users on the platform.


  1. Björk

Icelandic singer and actress Björk was a style icon of a generation, continuing to this day to pull off other-worldly outfits (see below). Björk’s latest album has a real biological and technological basis, partnering with Apple to create shapes of songs that mirror chemical sequencing of crystals and other tech wizardry.

Björk knows how influential tech will be in the future, wanting to bring her interest in technology and coding into her art. She hopes it will inspire creativity within the industry as well as educate people about the relationship between technology and biology.


  1. Ada Lovelace

Whilst Ada Lovelace was neither actor nor fashionista, she was part of the aristocracy. In a time where the majority of upper-class women were ladies of leisure, Ada very much stood out from the crowd with her mathematical skills.

Born two centuries ago, Ada was a pioneer of computer science. Recognised as the first person to publish an algorithm intended to be used by a computer, she is often regarded as the first computer programmer.

Ada was the daughter of famed poet Lord Byron and made significant contributions to Charles Babbage’s analytical machine. The early programming language ‘Ada’ was named after her, and the second Tuesday in October has become Ada Lovelace Day, on which the contributions of women to science, technology, engineering and mathematics are honoured.


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