Is your career in a STEM Field? Have you ever been the only female on your team at work? Did you graduate with a STEM degree, yet the percentage of women in the graduating class was less than 20%?
The answers are all yes for me. Last week I participated as a chaperone for sixth-grade girls at Ignite Your Superpower (IYS). IYS, sponsored by Women & Hi Tech, provided middle-school girls a whole day to discover more about Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) through participation in hands-on experiences, interactions with female role-models, and fun-filled learning on IUPUI’s campus.
This experience gives me hope that the percentage of females who are in STEM fields will increase, and in five to ten years I will not be the only female on my team. I enjoyed seeing these eager, curious, interested, energetic, smart, confident girls from Indianapolis area schools enthusiastic for the experiences local companies had prepared to introduce them to various STEM career paths.
When I became interested in technology, in many ways, it seemed like a niche field. Over the years, we have seen technology integrate with about every industry and job, increasing the demand and value of staying on top of every opportunity to learn about emerging technology.
Technology plays an increasingly prominent role in our lives, and with a diverse set of situations solved by the workers in STEM fields, a team greatly benefits from diverse perspectives. A genuinely different team includes various backgrounds, cultures, and ages. I also believe gender representation provides an additional edge leading to more innovation.
After being a part of this inspirational day on IUPUI’s campus, I have hope that our industry will continue to provide events like this, ones that inspire everyone to careers in STEM, bringing more representation to all groups and more innovation to our bright and promising future!