STEM Fields are for Girls Too
74% of young girls express interest in studying in STEM fields yet, in 2011, women accounted for only 39% of university graduates with a STEM degree. What happened along the way?
In 2014, Google released a study where they found that women unassociated with computer science described it as "boring", and "difficult". This seems strange considering the fact that women are the lead adopters of technology!
Do young girls really lose interest in technology? Or, do we unknowingly discourage women from perusing these career paths? The truth is, there are many factors that deter women and girls from pursuing careers in tech or nurture their interest in technology.
What can we do?
Schools There is a steep decline in the interest in STEM subject for girls between the ages of 11 and 15 years old . While we can't pinpoint one singular reason for this decline, the overwhelming advice for educators to reduce this decline is to make curriculums demonstrate the field's positive impact in the real world, increase access to mentors and role models, and showcase the contributions and successes of women in STEM today.
Tech Leaders Regardless of your gender, you can help empower women in tech through mentorship. Gen Z's interest in tech is looking promising and as they look to tech leaders for guidance, those leaders can help reduce future inequity in tech through the influence of their mentoring. #leadbyexample
Employers Promote your qualified women. According to a techjury.net article, "Women are 3.5 times more likely to be 35+ and still in a junior tech position."
"Women are 3.5 times more likely to be 35+ and still in a junior tech position."
On this international women's day, we celebrate Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world. In this spirit, we call upon our leaders, mentors, educators and parents to encourage girls, interested in technology, to pursue STEM-related work and education. During the Pandemic, STEM work has been at the heart of our global resiliency. We have seen small businesses evolve and grow their businesses online for first time; we have seen students continue to learn though virtual classrooms; not to mention, we have seen the fastest vaccine development in history.
In summary, this past years has shown us the true power of STEM related fields, and it's time to change the way we talk about them to our girls because it's not "boring" and "difficult". It’s impactful, creative, and evolving. So, let's to encourage the involvement of women in tech because, technology has no gender, only possibilities.
Photo by Ali Pazani from Pexels