Guest Post was written by Sean Mortberg, an aspiring tech writer and a student at the University of Louisville in Louisville, Kentucky.
Last April, a reported 627,000 jobs in tech remained unfilled. While some sectors are burgeoning with growth, such as software, cybersecurity, and cloud computing, the fact remains―women are drastically underrepresented in computer science and its related fields.
Compared to a national average unemployment rate of nearly 5%, jobs in computer science and engineering are only experiencing unemployment at half that rate. Women seemed to be most disadvantaged by this issue. While females make up half of the U.S. workforce, they only hold 20% of tech jobs. Despite progress and innovation by women who have made an impact in the field, there is still a lot of work to do in leveling the playing field for women in tech.
The majority of young women in STEM report being interested in pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics but by age 15 they lose interest. The reasons most often cited for this include a lack of female mentors, little opportunity for hands-on experience in STEM subjects, and gender inequality in STEM careers.
Many problems facing females seeking to get into the tech arena permeate from the boy’s club mentality that still heavily influences the Silicon Valley workplace. In her new book, author Emily Chang cites many obstacles to women in the tech field, including office sex parties, poor sexual harassment policy enforcement, and the unpredictability of male-run meetings.
While there are many horror stories out there, some companies are making inroads towards gender equality and fair treatment of women in technical fields. Intuit, the California-based software company, reports above industry average employment of females. They credit investing in women as crucial assets and leaders as well as harboring a healthy, efficient workplace with their success.
Women in tech have come a long way, but there is still a long road ahead. Learn more with the infographic below, provided by Evia.