WiBit.Net is proud to announce our partnership with Girls Who Code.
Girls Who Code is an organization dedicated to inspiring and educating girls with computing skills to pursue modern day opportunities.
Those of you that have watched our Introduction to Computer Programming course may have noticed that in the very beginning we asked the question: Am I a Software Developer? Our intention with this lesson was to casually talk about our experience (up to that point… we have certainly learned A LOT more since then) getting started in the profession. We talked about what we learned, observations we made, etc. In Part 4 of that lesson we discussed a topic: “Things you learn to live with”. In this section we took on some topics such as long work hours, how your work often comes home with you, learning time is on your own time, and diversity in the profession. We mentioned specifically the culture and age diversity. One thing we mentioned in particular was our observation that females in our field are not very common. I mean, there are some, and I am sure some companies have more than others, but this was just a simple casual observation that we made in our over a decade (at the time) working in the field.
Here is a transcript of our discussion recorded in September 2010 (Introduction to Computer Programming : Am I a Software Developer?, Part 4 starting at 2:47)
Bryan: The industry of Software Development is very diverse. In some companies that do certain types of things you might see certain constraints on demographics but you probably won’t find that as much in Software Development other than that it’s kind of sexist. It’s a male dominated, generally, industry but that doesn’t mean that it’s anti female.
Bryan: Most cases when I’ve seen a female developer apply for a job they usually have a higher probability of getting the job because they offer a unique point of view. And most development groups are always looking for more unique points of views. And, finding a female developer is few and far between. So, if you are a female and you’re looking to develop you’re extremely valuable just by the nature that you’re a female. BUT, that said, it is a male dominated industry. Also, most people in this industry will tend to be more on the nerdy side so they won’t be so quite so “good old boys club”, “jock-ish”, or putting down the girl. So, you probably won’t deal with a lot of sexual harassment, you probably won’t deal with a lot of sexism but it is a male dominated industry.
Kevin (tongue and cheek): If anything they don’t know how to deal with females…
Bryan (tongue and cheek): So you’ll probably have more power over all of the groups! ‘Cause they’ll just cower in fear!
Kevin: That’s a funny phenomenon you just mentioned. Cause I can recall, you know, you and I talked about this back in college, that you remember, like, the Computer Science, like, the introduction to Computer Science course? You know, maybe it was, like, I don’t know, like, mostly guys (men) but a good portion of females but as you went further along the curriculum, less girls, less girls, and to the point where we graduated… zero girls.
Bryan: Right. And it’s definitely not a matter of female competency. I think it may be more of, um, the expectations girls have. I think part of it also is that all technology tends to be geared towards guys (men). I mean, go to a game store… How many games that have cutting edge graphics and cutting edge technology are cutting edge in ways to shoot somebody or race a car? So, they are definitely geared towards the male solder, the male race car driver.
Kevin: Well, one thing to keep in mind… at one point nursing was female dominated and now it’s not. And you know what? Over time this trend will also be the same in software development and Bryan and I welcome this. This is a good thing.
You know, after doing that transcript I realized I say the word “like” an awful lot. I should, like, totally, like, stop doing that. Like, seriously.
WiBit.Net has always stood behind the creed that Software Development is a field that belongs to everyone with the desire, creativity, and commitment to make a positive difference. We have seen first-hand how differences in views and strategies can bring a successful dynamic to development groups.
The worst groups we have EVER worked in is when you have 10 people that are all exactly the same. Ugh, I shudder at the idea! Nothing gets done, and progress never happens.
We want to take this opportunity to thank Girls Who Code and offer our support to help them achieve their goals.
For more information about this great organization please visit their website: girlswhocode.com