April 30th 2015
Girls in ICT day – Bucking the trend
To celebrate Girls in ICT Day, an interactive 3D printing workshop was held by one of the biggest groups in the mobile phone industry to encourage 13-year-old girls from one of London’s most deprived communities to get into computing and coding.
The GSM Association (GSMA) invited a class of Year 8 students from the Bridge Academy in east London to attend a workshop at the digital fabrication and prototyping workspace FabLab London, where women working in technology told them about their jobs in order to encourage girls to see computing as fun and worth pursuing.
Toni Watson, our Apprentice Intake Executive from the Kings Cross Academy and 3aaa IT Apprentice, Karen Gaskell from Watford attended the GSMA offices near Bank in London for the event.
They were joined by a group of thirteen year old girls and their teachers, as well as some of the most inspirational women in IT. Women from companies such as Cute Circuit and Thought Works gave inspirational talks on what they do and the impact that their companies have made on the world today. The group were inspired by the products and ideas on show and the impact that they could potentially have on young women in the IT industry in the future.
Karen then inspired the young ladies from the school when she gave her speech on what she does for her company Wire Box within her apprenticeship. She explained that she hasn’t always wanted to do IT, she actually wanted to be a private investigator as a young child. It wasn’t until she started using technology properly and gained an understanding of the elements in sixth form that she knew that this is the career that she wanted to do. She explained her tasks as ‘pretty cool’ and kept it in a language that the audience understood.
Toni Watson said “I was proud when Karen started explaining that not everyone has to go to university to be successful, in fact, your happiness is more important than going into university and not enjoying what you are doing day in, day out for years of your life. She mentioned that as soon as you start applying within the industry with a years’ experience under your belt, employers are excited to see that there is a passion and knowledge for the industry as well as a qualification and experience. That is a massive commitment and one that our apprentices make daily on the route to changing their lives”.
Karen made a lasting impression on the girls and their teachers as well as the employers from the various companies that she and Toni met.
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