"Golden Like" for GirlsCodeToo
The computer science industry still suffers from a lack of diversity – especially when it comes to gender. Our "Golden Like" goes to an organisation that is actively doing something to close this socially conditioned gender gap and show girls that IT is for everyone.
BY ELIANE EISENRING
There is no other way to put it: your name is a statement that demands attention.
However, you don't just shout it out into the wide world to polarise. No, you are specifically passing on your message to those who need to hear it the most: girls and young women.
For in fact, they are still underrepresented in the diverse professional field of IT. In Switzerland, during the last ten years, only about 18 percent of all employees in the IT sector have been female. This is not least due to the fact that girls and young women are not introduced enough to this potentially exciting subject.
That's exactly what you want to change with your non-profit organisation: On the one hand, by showing them in coding clubs and workshops how much fun programming can be. On the other hand, by using the example of female course instructors as well as female university students to demonstrate to them that computer science – despite the prevailing social view – knows no gender.
This way, you make an important contribution to society: namely, to awaken girls' interest in STEM subjects. And in doing so, you are consistently pursuing your goal of one day closing the gender gap in these disciplines.
Accordingly, you are much more than just a cool leisure activity for girls. You offer them a way to break out of entrenched role models, discover talents, develop passions and ultimately empower them to confidently spread your message to the world: "Girls code too!"
For this laudable commitment, we would like to award you, dear GirlsCodeToo team, with our "Golden Like". Keep up the good work.
HOW CAN TECH COMPANIES ATTRACT AND RETAIN FEMALE PROFESSIONALS?
"Women prefer an environment where they see women in leadership, and that attracts more women," says Mary Hamilton, Managing Director at Tech Innovation. If tech companies became more inclusive, the annual turnover rate of women in the tech industry could drop by up to 70%. Thus, according to estimates, up to 3 million young women would be working in tech by 2030 – 1.4 million more than if current trends continue.
No sooner said than done! But how exactly do companies create an inclusive environment? The report "Resetting Tech Culture: 5 Strategies to Keep Women in Tech" gives 5 concrete tips. Read the report here.
Thank you for this honour of a "Golden Like". At GirlsCodeToo, we are on a mission to encourage and empower girls and young women to explore the possibilities of tech. It is heartening to see the increased awareness of the problem of under-representation of women in tech. However, more needs to be done. We need to shift the conversation from acknowledgement to action. There are fewer women in tech – that's a fact. What are we going to do about it? The gender stereotyping and self-selection out of STEM starts very early. Girls from a very young age start believing the myth that they don't like science or they are not good at math. It is our hope to change those mindsets and change them early on. We are grateful for your support of our mission.
Lara Riparip, GirlsCodeToo – Switzerland
In our format "The Golden Like", we regularly honour individuals or institutions with a short eulogy who, in our eyes, have earned special praise for their achievements or where the appreciative thank you is far too often neglected.