Stem careers are plentiful for women. The problem is, there aren’t enough women to fill those tech positions. Local college females and professionals are doing something to close that gap.
Right now women are a minority in the stem fields: science, technology, engineering and math. But, their smaller representation isn’t due to a lack of ability.
Sometimes all it takes is a little bit of exposure to peak their interest.
That’s why Indiana State women in these fields reach out to high school girls for early involvement.
Lacrisha Clinton is the President of the Females in Technology club at ISU. The FIT club hosted a conference Friday called “Fit for the Future.”
“This is our way of trying to encouraging more females into male-dominated professions. Simply because they’re male dominated for basically gender biases, gender stereotypes,” says Clinton.
The conference provides just the right kind of exposure to encourage young girls to explore their interests in STEM.
“We’re trying to show them that this isn’t just male fields, and that we have a rising opportunity for women now,” says Clinton.
As a graduating senior at ISU with a job already lined up in medical software, the need for women in this industry is something Clinton knows well.
On the other side of the conference is Emily Hayes, a junior at Rockville High School, who’s just getting started.
“I learned that it’s really hard to make a bottle car with a balloon,” says Hayes.
Hayes shows an aptitude for STEM, which is why her high school teachers have positioned her to explore options.
“We know as counselors that those jobs are high in demand, and they’re high-paying careers,” says Dawn Mitchell, Guidance Director at Rockville High School.
Hands-on workshops and networking with professional women in STEM peaked Hayes interests in the medical field.
“It was really cool we actually got to birth a baby, which is cool. There was like a simulation, and you got to see the whole process, and actually do it,” says Hayes.
The teachers enjoy giving kids the experience.
“They’ve gotten to learn about some technologies that we just don’t have at the high school level. Things that we just didn’t even know exist,” says Mitchell.
For more information on the “FIT for Future” conference, follow the FIT Club’s link here: ISU Females in Technology