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International Girls in ICT Day empowers women worldwide

International Girls in ICT Day empowers women worldwide

 April 18, 2019

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In celebration of International Girls in ICT Day – which takes place every year on the fourth Thursday of April, Where Women Work is shining a spotlight on the prime employers for women who are encouraging the next generation of female ICT professionals and offering opportunities in the sector.

A campaign which helps bridge the digital gender divide

The important International Girls in ICT Day campaign encourages and empowers girls and young women to consider studies and car​eers in the growing field of ICT. The initiative​ enables both girls and technology companies to reap the benefits of greater female participation in the ICT sector.

Over 357,000 girls and young women have already taken part in more than 11,100 celebrations of International Girls in ICT Day in 171 countries worldwide. ​Government ministries, national ICT regulatory authorities, ICT companies, academic institutions, UN agencies, and NGOs around the world are all encouraged to join the global effort and ​​celebrate the campaign.

The International Girls in ICT Day Events Map displays events held since 2017 – and organisations can add their own events to the map, which demonstrates the exciting spread of activity taking place every year worldwide. Below, we take a look at some of the prime employers for women who are all playing their part in supporting the important Girls in ICT Day agenda.

F5 offers a diverse range of programmes and events

F5 is a great supporter of women in technology. From sponsoring the Hopperx1 Conference which aims to improve diversity in the tech industry, through to inviting Girls Who Code CEO and founder Reshma Saujani to talk to F5 colleagues.

The company also runs its own internships and graduate options for young people looking to enter the industry. One of these opportunities is the F5 cyber-security partnership with Edinburgh Napier University, which is particularly exciting as future employees are exposed to real-life IT environments and threats, enabling a better understanding of IT security technology.

Modules on the program include topics such as cryptography, network forensics and malware analysis, which are all designed to empower students to feel fully prepared for a professional cyber-security career.

HCL Technologies captures a new STEM audience with #SheInspires

HCL's #SheInspires campaign captures the life stories of women who've blazed a trail in STEM fields. HCL is hopeful that these stories and the company’s further programs will help inspire the next generation of women leaders in STEM.

Through the campaign, women are invited to share their stories on social media, using #SheInspires, in order to inspire more girls into the field of technology.

HCL employee Zulfia Nafees has shared her advice: "Over the years, I tried to practice the art of shutting the noise out and keeping my eyes fixed on the big picture. This has ensured that I remain competitive and relevant. So don't waste time sweating the small stuff. Don't waste your energy on politics, noise, ego, hassles - none of that matters in the long run - only high impact outcomes matter."

Information computer technology career

MetLife’s university programme is a platform for rising ICT stars

MetLife Tech University is a program for rising students and entry-level professionals that provides training and educational opportunities for emerging top talent.

MetLife offers two tracks – Internship and Professional – in order to immerse participants in its business, people and culture.

The idea of the program is to encourage students and entry-level professionals into STEM careers. The company is always on the lookout for candidates who are creative, critical thinkers and problem solvers who are excited by complex challenges. Those interested in the program must be passionate and curious individuals with a proven record of achievement, and have a background in computer science, engineering, math, other hard sciences, and/or business with an ICT focus.

Vodafone helps young girls to Step into STEM

Anne Sheehan, Vodafone’s first female UK Enterprise Director, says: “At Vodafone, we see it as our responsibility to inspire future generations to become technology leaders, regardless of gender or background. As Vodafone’s first female UK Enterprise Director, I am excited to be part of a great movement to encourage young girls and women to explore their professional potential in ICT.”

True to her word, Anne and her team have been busy making STEM more attractive to girls still in education. This is being achieved by partnering Girls Talk to progress Vodafone’s Step into STEM mentor scheme which provides support, skills development and assistance in career choices to girls.

Step into STEM targets students from low-income backgrounds, with Vodafone employees acting as mentors and providing one-to-one support for female students who are based in London. There is no better time than now to learn more about this pioneering initiative.

84.51° has immersive internship and development opportunities

84.51° offers exciting ICT opportunities for girls through its Internship Program – a 10-week immersive opportunity over the summer that allows young people to gain real work experience while learning the ins and outs of 84.51°’s business and culture. Perhaps the most exciting element of the program is that those who succeed on the internship have full-time positions waiting for them in the Development Program after they graduate.

The Development Program for graduates develops leaders in the making with the mentorship and support structure they need to become an industry whiz. This program is for entry-level talent in Data Science & Analytics, Consulting or Engineering.

Become a true STEM Ambassador with AECOM

AECOM offers girls the resources to turn their knowledge into limitless potential. Various internships, including ones which encompass an ICT focus, are available. The two-year AECOM Graduate Development Programme also offers exciting opportunities, as does the ADVANCE Early Career Programme and the company’s apprenticeship opportunities.

Elle Gaffney, Early Careers Talent Lead, says: “All apprentices will become STEM Ambassadors and they will have the opportunity to deliver a project for AECOM’s work winning team; this means they are truly supporting our key business directives.”

Through these exciting schemes, girls can truly build their future and make an impact in ICT with the support of AECOM’s global network of experience.

Amazon’s Women’s Internship Network is helping future talent

As an online shopping platform, Amazon offers an abundance of ICT career opportunities for young women. Amazon's Women's Internship Network in Operations (WIN-In-Ops) encourages women interested in STEM fields to explore careers in technology, operations management, logistics and supply chain. Amazon also brings female graduates into technology roles in various divisions across the business.

For younger girls, Amazon offers a range of technology-focused internships, including: IT - MA (Hons) IT Management for Business, IT - Infrastructure Technician and Network Engineering/Project Management Apprenticeship and Digital, and Technology Solutions Professional – Software Development Degree Apprenticeship. The company also works regularly with schools through the Amazon Future Engineer program where students learn to code through Coding With Kids.

Girls In ICT Day

BD executives are inspiring young people into the world of ICT

Women executives at BD inspire young people to pursue STEM careers in many ways. One example of a women flying high is Jennifer Looi, Senior Research and Development Engineer.

Jennifer has had an impressive career as a Research and Development Engineer at BD. Describing herself as a "results driven product development engineer", she has a 10-year track record of cross-functional team work, the ability to characterize and optimize the performance of combination products, and influential involvement in the entire process of a new product's development cycle.

Girls looking to follow in the footsteps of Jennifer and other female professionals at BD might wish to enrol on the company’s IT Summer Intern Program.

During the program, interns receive the chance to make an impact on their teams, projects and leaders. BD provides them with meaningful work experiences, mentoring, an in-depth orientation, networking activities, intern events, project presentations and exposure to the many benefits of working at BD.

The company also offers an Information Technology Leadership Program, known as EDGE, which describes itself as a course for developing the next generation of innovators.

Capgemini’s global program helps promote gender balance in ICT

As a key player in the ICT and professional services industry, Capgemini continually champions women in technology, whether it is through supporting the Women in Artificial Intelligence Awards or running its own in-house initiatives and programs.

Particularly notable is the Women@Capgemini global program which sets the overarching guidelines around gender balance across the group. One of its main goals is to globally change the corporate mentalities through strong commitments and role models from group leaders. The company has also launched a pioneering Digital Academy for people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Capgemini wants to inspire more young people to choose a career in ICT, or to leave education with the best ICT skills they can. It is making this dream a reality by offering exciting internships, apprenticeships and graduate opportunities.

Eaton is leading the way in technological innovation

With a female Chief Technology Officer – Christine Barman – Eaton is another employer which is encouraging girls into ICT.

Christine says: “Eaton is a global, world-class technology company that is on the leading edge of improving quality of life and the environment through the use of power management technologies and services.”

Eaton is truly leading the way in technological innovation. In the age of big data and IoT, digital connectivity exists across the manufacturing floor, electric grid, buildings, healthcare facilities, transportation and at home. Eaton is creating Intelligent Power solutions that collect data, learn and provide actionable insights to optimize power use and continuity.

Girls joining Eaton have the exciting challenge of working on R&D matters and bringing its products and services to the IoT and Big Data era. There are a whole range of exciting internships and graduate opportunities available for those interested in STEM.

EBRD celebrates its 50-50 technology gender split

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is proud to have a rare 50-50 split between male and female technology leaders.

Amongst the most senior women in tech leading from the front at EBRD is Associate Director for Insight and Innovation, Ecaterina Harling.

She says: “The EBRD is truly diverse. The EBRD is great at getting its women together – within IT we meet regularly both formally and informally. There is plenty of training available, including specific training and events for women in IT.”

The EBRD is renowned for encouraging women to progress in their careers and chosen ventures, offering exceptional career opportunities. Roles in ICT with the bank can be demanding but also very rewarding, challenging and fun. There are many opportunities for young girls looking to explore the sector.

Honeywell inspires the ICT leaders of tomorrow through its academy

Honeywell is encouraging the female technology leaders of tomorrow in many ways. One example is its Leadership Challenge Academy.

The program provides high school students with a unique opportunity to build and hone their leadership skills by tackling real-world challenges in STEM.

Young girls from all over the world are experiencing the Honeywell Leadership Challenge Academy, and even visiting the U.S. Space Rocket Center through the scheme.

One participant, Andreea Secareanu from Romania, says: “I definitely want to do something that has a connection with astronauts, space and rockets.”

Another girl to have taken part, Kathleen Rice from the USA, adds: “Now that I’ve been through space camp, I had so much fun with it that I know I want to be an engineer.”

The IET offers a whole host of technology awards and scholarships

The Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET) is taking exciting action to address the gender imbalance across the ICT industry.

The institution offers a variety of awards, scholarships, bursaries, events and much more – all designed to encourage and support women in technology and engineering.

Some of the fabulous opportunities available include The IET Achievement Awards, The IET Postgraduate Scholarships and Prizes, and The IET Diamond Jubilee scholarships and Engineering Horizons bursaries. More information on all of these can be found here.

McDonald’s helps employees be who they want to be

McDonald’s is part of the European Alliance for Apprenticeships and has pledged to offer 43,000 apprenticeships across Europe by 2025. Through these apprenticeships, young girls can develop a range of business-critical skills including; planning and organization, increasing sales and handling stock, customer service and decision making, developing talent, and being an inspirational leader.

Girls working with McDonald’s who want to move into the technology field might also wish to consider the company’s Where You want To Be program which helps employees pursue their dream careers and move into their chosen fields.

Among the five ‘influencers’ or mentors involved with the Where You Want To Be programme is Digital Content Creator Tyler Oakley, who is a former McDonald’s crew member turned tech expert.

Medtronic hosts SEED Days for tech-loving girls

Medtronic runs ongoing Student Employer Exploration Days (SEED) offering young girls an opportunity to pursue careers in technology.

Women are “woefully under-represented” in the science and technology professions, according to Sheri Henck, Vice President of Global Supply Chain at Medtronic.

In order to help change this, Sheri uses the events to urge the teenagers taking part to pursue their interests in any STEM field, saying: “There may be times when you’re the only female in the room. It can be scary. Embrace that as an opportunity. Use your voice. Speak up. You will be inspiring others who may not be as courageous.”

Medtronic is also providing ten $5,000 scholarships for young women planning to pursue STEM majors in college or university through Diabetes Scholars.

Northrop Grumman’s Women@STEM days inspire the younger generation

Northrop Grumman Corporation is nurturing future women technologists through career exploration activity days. The WOMEN@STEM Career Days are designed to inspire students to pursue careers during the Fourth Industrial Revolution. They offer students practical advice and realistic experiences through special career lectures, mentoring and a career opportunities booth.

Female college students majoring in computer engineering, information security, robotics and virtual engineering all participate in the events as junior mentors. Women leaders in the science and technology industry are also able to take part as special lecturers and interact closely with the students to raise the understanding of STEM fields.

Girls technology career

Nottingham Trent University celebrates Ada Lovelace

Nottingham Trent University uses the annual event, Ada Lovelace Day, to inspire young girls with STEM.

The university invites female students from Nottingham schools to a special event where they can find out about the exciting career options available. At one event, an all-girl group of students took part in a session which was created to spotlight the accessible and appealing career paths in science.

Following this session, the pupils were given a tour of BioCity and watched presentations from women working in or studying STEM.

The annual Ada Lovelace Day recognises Ada Lovelace, the daughter of Nottinghamshire poet, Lord Byron, who is known as the first computer programmer due to her progressive work on the analytical engine.

In addition, the university’s Graduate Development Programme is suitable for girls interested in Information Systems (IS) who wish to pursue a career in higher education.

Exciting STEM scholarships for women from Diageo 

Diageo is funding two scholarships to encourage young women to study science, technology, engineering and mathematics at university.

The company has announced the scholarships in partnership with Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh. They will provide two women studying a BSc in Brewing and Distilling and an MEng in Mechanical Engineering with paid internships, mentoring from women in Diageo's manufacturing business and funding for the duration of their degrees.

Women at NSW DFSI are building an exciting digital future

NSW DFSI is truly supportive of women in ICT as well as young girls looking to gain experience in this sector.

The government department is embracing digital technology and is creating partnerships with industry to help maintain NSW's status at the leading Australian government for digital readiness.

The first of these partnerships is with Microsoft Australia. What this means for young women interested in ICT is that working at DFSI presents a very exciting career opportunity.

The NSW Government in Australia is also adopting a new approach to IT procurement, simplifying the relationship and interaction between agencies and suppliers. The government-wide platform is pitched to become the state’s single channel for IT procurement.

Natasha Wolf, Delivery Manager for the project, says: “We’re changing rules. We’re changing standards.” There couldn’t be a more exciting time to build a future in ICT with DFSI.

Schneider Electric reaches out to schoolgirls with STEAM events

Schneider Electric is partnering with schools across the US on activities such as its Girls in STEAM Empowerment Conference. The aim of these partnerships is to make sure that students are prepared to fill the technical jobs needed to support Schneider Electric and other businesses.

Recent research shows that women are greatly underrepresented in lots of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) fields, and Schneider Electric wants to play its partin tackling the issue.

Kathleen Neff, Account Manager at Schneider Electric Energy & Sustainability Services, says: "I know first-hand how hard it can be for teachers with funding constraints to provide the STEAM resources needed to empower students. That’s why it’s important for educators and companies that will hire these girls in the future to enhance STEAM learning opportunities for students."

Events such as the Girls in STEAM Empowerment Conference showcase STEAM fields and aim to inspire girls into sectors such as ICT. In addition to special events, Schneider offers a range of opportunities for ambitious young women.

University of Sheffield educates children with STEM adventures

The lack of diversity in ICT and STEM as a whole is well documented, but the University of Sheffield has been addressing the issue through playing a part in educating children.

The Engineering Is campaign aims to challenge perceptions and inspire primary school children – particularly young girls – to pursue STEM subjects at university.

The university also hosts Exploring STEM for Girls events and offers a variety of exciting opportunities for women looking to further their careers as part of the university faculty.

Rio Tinto women can lay claim to the world’s biggest robot

Rio Tinto is a company which is really embracing digital innovation. It has many things to be proud of – such as producing the world's first certified responsible aluminium, creating the world's biggest robot, and driverless trains which present great career pathways in technology for young women. Not to mention the world's first automated heavy haul rail network which offers many exciting tech career opportunities

With the launch of its new Pioneer Lab which invites selected employees to come up with ideas to help drive the company forward into the future, now is an exciting time to explore a career with the business.

Arcadis offers a range of ICT opportunities for young women

Arcadis offers a range of internships for ‘bright sparks’ looking to change the world for the better, as well as graduate options and apprenticeships for girls interested in ICT. When it comes to technology, an exciting area for women's career growth with Arcadis is in the autumonous vehicles space.

Do you want to start an ICT career or inspire girls into the industry?

By joining a prime employer for women with a STEM focus, you can ensure your work makes a difference in helping girls meet their potential. If you’re interested in joining a company that supports the advancement of girls in ICT, research the latest career opportunities today.


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Disclosure: Where Women Work researches and publishes insightful evidence about how its paid member organizations support women's equality.


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