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Women pursuing careers in the technical fields can benefit from taking advantage of the services provided by their campus career center, according to a joint study conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) and Break Through Tech, an initiative of Cornell Tech.
The study, detailed in “The Impact of Career Services on Women Pursuing Tech Careers,” examines the current landscape for women pursuing careers in technical fields and what can be done to improve outcomes for women.
“Currently, women are underrepresented not only in terms of those pursuing degrees in tech-related fields but in the tech workforce as well,” says Judith Spitz, founder and executive director of Break Through Tech.
Women account for just 27% of the computing workforce, according to the National Center for Women & Information Technology. In addition, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, currently, women account for 58% of all bachelor’s degrees conferred but just 22% of those in computer science and information technology.
One of the study’s key findings is the impact college career services can have in leveling the playing field for women in general and in particular for women pursuing tech careers:
- Undergraduate men get more job offers than undergraduate women regardless of whether they use career services, but the use of career services helps narrow the gap between the two groups.
- When undergraduate women earning STEM-related degrees use career services, they get more job offers than their male counterparts; in contrast, when neither group uses career services, men earning STEM degrees get more job offers.
“Our research points to the important role career services can play not only in helping women successfully launch their careers in the technology sector but also in helping tech companies build inclusive workforces,” says Shawn VanDerziel, NACE president and chief executive officer.
The study also examined best practices aimed at addressing the challenges faced by women pursuing tech careers.
“This joint research, along with our own published data, confirm that innovative experiential learning programs that directly engage employers are one of the highest leverage interventions to help level the playing field for women and other underserved communities when it comes to tech talent recruitment,” says Spitz.
“The Impact of Career Services on Women Pursuing Tech Careers” is free and available to the public on the NACE website.
This press release originally appeared online.
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