How do we increase the number of women studying and working in Information Technology (IT)? The lack of diversity in the IT industry has been a hot topic for decades and many strategies have been implemented to increase the number of women in this exciting and innovative industry.
One of the ways that Somerset College is attempting to promote women in IT and increase the number of girls choosing IT as an elective, is by coaching teams in the 2016 Search for the Next Tech Girl Superhero competition. This competition is part of the Tech Girls Movement founded by Dr Jenine Beekhuyzen.
Mrs Elke Schneider, IT teacher, has been coaching two teams of girls in Years 8 and 9 since the beginning of Term Two. The girls have been meeting with Mrs Schneider every week during lunch periods and early mornings, while also communicating and collaborating online. We have been very fortunate to also have two mentors from Suncorp; Belinda Lawrence, Delivery Manager, CCW Framework Team, Technology Services and Hayley Pepper, Delivery Manager, CCW Bank Life and New Zealand, Technology Services. Both Belinda and Hayley recently visited Somerset College to meet our Tech Girls and help them with their work. The Tech Girls were super excited to meet their mentors and were inspired to hear about the variety of IT-related roles that are possible in the IT industry.
The Tech Girls are Superheroes competition requires that teams plan, analyse, design and develop an innovative Android App that helps their community. The Tech Girls have learned computer programming fundamentals using MIT App Inventor, while also understanding how to create a business plan, a pitch video and an app demo video.
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