Why Do We Do What We Do?

 The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that technology professionals will experience the highest growth in job numbers between now and 2030. Failing to bring the minds and perspectives of half the population to STEM and computer science fields stifles innovation and makes it less likely that we can solve today’s social challenges at scale.
 
Research Indicates:
  •  Girls and young women have a hard time picturing themselves in STEM roles.
  • They need more exposure to STEM jobs, female role models, and career  awareness and planning. 
  • Girls don’t initially see the potential for careers in STEM to be creative or have a positive impact on the world. But even a little exposure to real-world applications of STEM knowledge dramatically changes their outlook.
  • Girls who participate in STEM clubs and activities outside of school are more likely to say they will pursue STEM subjects later in their education. The kinds of experiments and experiences girls are exposed to in these activities can provide insights for how to enhance STEM instruction in the classroom.
  • Encouragement from teachers and parents makes a big difference in girls’ interest in STEM—especially when it comes from both teachers and parents.
  • Educators can foster a “growth mindset” among their female students by tapping into their willingness to work hard for results.
Some Facts!
  • In 2017, 26% of the computing workforce were women, and less than 10% were women of color. (5% were Asian, 3% were African-American, and 1% were Hispanic.)- NCWIT.org
  • Recent  research by Microsoft, NCWIT, and the Women Tech Council also found that traditionally “Women who are qualified to lead simply don’t have the powerful backing necessary to inspire, propel, and protect them through the perilous straits of upper management. Women lack, in a word, sponsorship.”
  • Finding a way for women to find internal support from peers and leadership is crucial in helping women move forward in their careers and increase their overall efficacy and value to their company.
  • In 2014, Forbes ranked Utah the best state for business, citing Utah’s roots in the tech industry. Meanwhile, a Wallstreet 24/7 study ranked Utah as the worst place for women. The study states, “less than 31% of management positions were held by women in Utah.”

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