Katherine and Milan are the founding
co-directors of Open Sesame Coding for Kids.
The Orange County Register named them to their list of
Top 100 Most Influential People in 2018.
Katherine McPhie is a national winner of the NCWiT Computing Award (one of 40 nationwide), a Prudential Spirit of Community Distinguished Finalist (one of 9 statewide), and a Disneyland Luminary (one of 5 county-wide). Last year, the Orange County Rescue Mission presented Katherine with the Presidential Volunteer Service Award Gold Medal. In 2018 Katherine was a summer research intern at UCI, performing and analyzing mathematical modeling of disorganized molecules. In 2017, she was named “Miss Mathematician,” the top accolade at CSU Fullerton’s Math Intensive Summer Session. In 2016, she won second place in a regional semester-long mobile app development competition sponsored by Time Warner Cable. She is a drum major at University High School, where she also serves on the board of Junior Classical League and represents her class on Irvine’s High School Youth Action Team.
Since she was in middle school, Milan Narula has been dedicated to improving the lives of disadvantaged children. In 2015, Milan began volunteering with special needs children and their siblings at Intervention Center for Early Childhood, at-risk youth at KidWorks in Santa Ana, and homeless children through School on Wheels. Milan has absolutely loved this work. She has earned many awards and accolades for her community service, and was featured in this news report about her volunteer work. A sophomore at University High School, Milan is a cheerleader and IMPACT mentor who was elected to both the UHS Homeroom Senate and Sophomore Class Council. Milan has been chosen to represent her school at the 2019 Hugh O’Brien (HOBY) State Leadership Seminar in June. She intends to become a teacher one day so she can continue her life's passion of helping kids.