I mitt TED talk vill jag slå hål på stereotyper och visa på de otroliga möjligheterna som finns efter en civilingenjörsutbildning. Jag hade aldrig i min vildaste fantasi trott att jag skulle hamna där jag är idag. /Sofie Lindblom
The IT girl
Here at Womengineers we have our own special IT girl, Sofie Lindblom. Recently she did her own TedTalk (Big wow!!) about diversity and women in the field of technology. She takes us with humor and seriousness from TV-shows like Gossip Girls, about rich teenagers with cool jobs, to Silicon Valley, about stereotyped male programmers and tell us the main problems we need to solve to get more women into this amazing field!
The engineer today:
When you are young and you don’t know what you want to do for a job you look at others for inspiration. Unfortunatly the image of people in technology doesn’t help so much. It lack diversity, so for women it might not look interesting.
If you search for “engineer” on Google, this is what shows up:
At the moment these two facts occur in the field of technology:
1. We lack diversity in the IT industry
2. Diverse teams create better results
How do we get more women into technology fields? And also important, how do we get them to stay? Before I watched Sofies talk I had no idea that women leave their chances to become and work as engineers. She explains why and it is really frustrating:
Three things that keep women from the field of technology:
1. Abandoning your interest
it’s not easy to follow your interests when you don’t even know them. We don’t know about this field so we don’t even glance at that direction. If I ask you what children do to show that they are potential engineers, you might come up with ”easy for math”, ”interested in technology” or ”destroying toys to see what’s inside”.
These kids that already are doing these things got told in a young age that this field could be great for them. What about the others that didn’t show these specific interests? The fact is that you can work with any kind of engineering when you have one solid foundation called technology. On top of that you can put economics, arts or clothing fashion. More or less whatever you prefer.
2. Abandoning university
If we know about this field and are interested about studying engineering, we might start the university. Great! But then we tend to drop out. Why?
First, the educations of technology mainly hold a lot of men, so as women we are a minority. When you are a minority you might put a lot of energy to prove yourself and that can distract from learning and achieving.
Secondly, we might not see the purpose in the courses we are taking. It can be hard to see any meaning with our education when you are in the middle of it. Sofie says:
The opportunities on the other side are freaking fantastic!
3. Abandoning the industry
Women leave the industry. Again we might be minorities and therefore it is a possibility we leave our job and field. Maybe stories about other people taking cred for your job and projects that assigns to someone else while you weren’t invited to the meeting makes you quit. Women feel left out because of lack of empathy.
The technology field can only build greatness with a diversity.
In a short future there will be a lack of engineers. One of the solutions would be if at least 50 % of the people would even consider engineering as their occupation. Those people are us, women.
It´s time for companies and university’s to recognize and welcome women’s great competence to create better results.
Womengineer is changing the field!
I am proud to be a part of Womengineer. To be a role model and an inspiration for women, diversity and technology.
Just like Sofie. She has become one of my role models. What an amazing girl!
Vi vet också att det går bättre för företag som satsar på mångfald. Så det är inte bara roligare, det är också mer lönsamt. I mitt jobb kring innovation är det dessutom avgörande eftersom mångfald tenderar att driva nya innovationer. Det är en Win-Win-Win! /Sofie Lindblom