Diversity in technology has been an extremely hot topic over the last several months. Recent employee demographic reports published by major tech companies such as Apple, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Yahoo have sparked commentary, while Intel has announced a $300 million, five-year commitment to women’s leadership and diversity. News outlets like Fortune, Slate, Time, and VentureBeat are sharing findings that show the racial and gender makeup of many Silicon Valley-based companies are nearly the same, and haven’t fluctuated much over time.
According to a Kauffman Foundation report, the limited number of women professionals in the tech industry results in fewer female advisors available to mentor younger women, which directly impacts entrepreneurship. At the same time, leaders in tech describe a grim situation where there is little availability of credentialed candidates from underrepresented groups.
Programming, education, and the American dream
Our next FutureTalk event—this Monday, February 9, at 6 p.m. in our downtown Portland, Oregon, engineering headquarters—will focus on the issue of Diversity and Education in Tech and feature a pair of prominent women professionals from our own community.
Liz Abinante is a New Relic engineer at New Relic who previously served as co-leader for the Chicago chapter of Girl Develop It, where she taught and organized programming classes for women and minorities. Liz will discuss the history of the American Dream, how new programming education endeavors have repackaged it, and how the lack of awareness is affecting our culture and workforce.
Women in today’s tech
We will also hear from Janice Levenhagen, executive director of ChickTech, who was inspired to create the organization by her own experiences in computer engineering. Her talk on Women in Today’s Tech will guide us through the stats on technical women in various national and local tech companies and share anecdotes illustrating some of the reasons why women leave technology at twice the rate that men do.
For more information on our FutureTalks speaker series, see Our Favorite FutureTalks.
Scheduled events and speakers are subject to change without notice.