Click the image above for a full infographic "Girls in IT: The Facts"
It’s true: the world needs women coders. And in the United States, in particular, women represent a largely untapped pool of talent in computing that could help fill a growing need for qualified job candidates who hold computing bachelor’s degrees.
The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that more than 1.4 million computing jobs will be open by the year 2020. The U.S. will only be able to fill about 30% of those opening computer jobs with qualified college graduates — ones holding computing degrees. And of those degree holders, only 18% of them are women.
What’s stopping young women from pursuing degree programs in computer-related fields?
One study shows that women and men choose computing majors for very different reasons. Men pursue computer science because of interests in computer games far more often than women do, for instance. Women who pursue the field, on the other hand, show a more significant interest in helping others via their work.
Both men and women show equal interest in computer science as a creative outlet, computing as a good career opportunity, and computing as providing good financial opportunities after college.
So if women have the same practical desires (job security, good pay) as men do regarding careers in computing, then what pushes men to earn bachelor’s degrees in computer-related fields while simultaneously pushing women away from the same degrees?
The barriers preventing girls from pursuing computing degrees are unique. Computing curriculums need to be relevant to women, and girls need to be better educated about the many ways that computing can become part of their careers. Parents, teachers, and schools can all help promote computer science as a professional opportunity for women and girls.
Do you want to encourage a female student, daughter, or mentee to consider a career in computing? Here are some talking points in English and in Spanish from the National Center for Women & Information Technology that can help you get the conversation started.
Posted on Fri, December 20, 2013
by MOParent filed under