Top-Tier Technology Companies and Non-Profits Rally Behind NCWIT to Meet Global Demand for Tech Talent

May 19, 2014

Organizations Lending Voices to 10th Anniversary NCWIT Summit Include Apple, AT&T, The Clinton Foundation, DevelopHer, Google, HP, Microsoft, and Rapt Media

The National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) (http://www.ncwit.org), a non-profit focused on increasing women’s participation in technology, today announced that Apple, AT&T, The Clinton Foundation, DevelopHer, Google, Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, and Rapt Media are lending their support to NCWIT, and to their 2014 NCWIT Summit on Women and IT: practices and ideas to revolutionize computing. These organizations and others are rallying together at NCWIT’s 10th Anniversary Summit in Newport Beach, California from May 19-21, 2014, in an effort to increase the number of women in technology and computing and meet the national demand for technology talent

This year’s NCWIT Summit (http://www.ncwit.org/summit) acknowledges a decade of leading change in computing. The annual event convenes more than 500 prominent social scientists, educators, entrepreneurs, and corporate executives to learn about groundbreaking research, share ideas, and gain inspiration for taking action in support of women and computing.

Event highlights include: 

  • NCWIT and Apple will honor the recipients of the 2014 Southern California NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing on May 20. The award honors young women at the high school level for their computing-related achievements and interests. Andrea Jung, President and CEO of Grameen America and Apple Board Member, will announce the winners. Apple is a strong supporter of NCWIT’s Aspirations in Computing Program (http://www.aspirations.org) the only national talent development pipeline initiative focusing on technically inclined young women, and the Ambassadors program, which draws together Aspirations alumnae.

    "Cultivating young women's talent in computing today is necessary to ensure their place in the technology workforce tomorrow," stated Lucy Sanders, CEO and Co-Founder of NCWIT. "We're pleased to partner with Apple in recognizing, encouraging and creating opportunities for the next generation of female IT leaders. In addition to this event being NCWIT’s 10th Anniversary, it’s also the 10th anniversary of Apple’s relationship with NCWIT; we’re proud to have had them work alongside us since the beginning.”

     
  • NCWIT and AT&T will honor the recipients of the 2014 NCWIT Undergraduate Research Mentoring Award, which acknowledges computing professors for their outstanding mentorship of women and minority undergraduates in computing-related fields. The award is sponsored by AT&T, who will provide each of the recipients’ academic institutions with a gift of $5,000.

     
  • Chelsea Clinton will speak about the important role women play in technology as well as the work of the Clinton Foundation’s initiative, No Ceilings: The Full Participation Project, which seeks to advance the full participation of women and girls around the world. After delivering remarks, Chelsea will participate in a Q&A with Lucy Sanders, CEO and Co-founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT).

     
  • Actress and activist Maria Bello will announce the DevelopHer Toy and Game Challenge to encourage the development of new Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM)-based toys for young girls. The DevelopHer Toy and Game Challenge was co-founded by Andrea Guendelman and Carrie Van Heyst and supported by board chair, Jane Saltzman. The effort responds to research indicating the importance of STEM-based toys for the educational development of children, particularly young girls. The Challenge announcement will be made on May 20.

     
  • NCWIT and Google.org will announce a commitment of $1.5 million to grow the NCWIT Extension Services for Undergraduate Programs. The funds will be used to scale the existing program, including providing cash awards to participating Academic Alliance members. The announcement will be made at the Summit on May 19.



    “By changing the cultures in which we all work, rather than asking women to adapt to a biased system, we can address biases present in technical cultures and make a dramatic difference in the number of women successfully pursuing tech-related degrees,” said Lucy Sanders, CEO and Co-Founder, NCWIT. “We’re grateful to Google.org for this generous commitment.”



    The goal of NCWIT Extension Services for Undergraduate Programs is to furnish change agents with evidence-based resources for recruiting and retaining women through customized consultation to academic department clients to bring about systemic changes.

     
  • HP will be sponsoring the NCWIT Collegiate Program, an extension of Aspirations in Computing, which serves women studying undergraduate computing at NCWIT Academic Alliance schools. “Through the generous financial support of HP, NCWIT is pleased to launch this pilot program for college-level women,” said Lucy Sanders, CEO and Cofounder, NCWIT.



    “We are working with NCWIT to support the Collegiate Program in encouraging the retention of women in computing programs through mentoring and access to opportunities. At HP we believe in hiring and developing technical women to add a wider range of perspectives and ultimately achieve better business outcomes,” said Tami Mallett, Vice President & CIO, Enterprise Group, HP.

     
  • NCWIT and Microsoft Research will recognize winners of the NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund, which provides U.S. academic institutions with start-up funds to develop and implement initiatives that recruit and retain women in computing and technology fields of study. Since 2007, NCWIT and Microsoft Research have awarded $465,450 in funding to 39 universities and colleges over 10 funding cycles. In this round, $10,000 will be distributed to each of five U.S. institutions.



    Microsoft will also announce The Big Dream Movement, which connects organizations, academia, and resources to girls around the world pursuing STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields. The movement is anchored by Big Dream, a documentary that follows the stories of seven young women who are breaking barriers and overcoming personal challenges to reach their goals.



    “Microsoft is pleased to be underwriting this film,” said Rane Johnson-Stempson, Principal Research Director, Microsoft Research. “Our hope is that these inspirational stories will excite young women, their families, and friends to the possibilities inherent in science and technology.”

     
  • Rapt Media will unveil a new, interactive video aimed at identifying and addressing unconscious gender bias. To see the video visit, http://www.ncwit.org/resources/are-you-unconsciously-biased.



    “Approximately 50% of women leave the computing workforce mid-career,” said Rapt Media Founder and CEO, Erika Trautman. “Creating awareness of unconscious gender bias can help make workplaces more women-friendly, thereby ensuring that we are able to retain their vital knowledge and experience.”



    “As a leading information and resource provider to corporations, academic institutions, government agencies, and non-profits working to increase women's participation in technology and computing, we’re excited to be able to make this powerful, interactive tool available,” said Catherine Ashcraft, Senior Research Scientist, NCWIT.



    Rapt Media makes possible the creation of highly engaging interactive videos. It’s suite of browser-based solutions is fundamentally changing how companies engage with their customers online.

 

The 2014 NCWIT Summit is being streamed live at http://www.ncwit.org/livestream, provided by Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. The event is sponsored by NCWIT’s Strategic and Investment Partners, and co-hosted by Qualcomm. Additional support is provided by Cox Communications, Johnson & Johnson, MakerBot, Microsoft, and Rapt Media. Find out more about the NCWIT Summit content and schedules at http://www.ncwit.org/summit.

About NCWIT 

The National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) is a non-profit community of more than 500 universities, companies, non-profits, and government organizations nationwide working to increase women’s participation in computing and technology. NCWIT convenes change leaders and equips them with resources for taking action in recruiting, retaining, and advancing women from K–12 and higher education through industry and entrepreneurial careers. Find out more at http://www.ncwit.org. 

NCWIT receives significant financial support from Strategic Partners NSF, Microsoft, Bank of America, Google, and Intel, as well as from Investment Partners Avaya, Pfizer, Merck, Turner Broadcasting Systems, Inc., AT&T, Bloomberg, and Hewlett-Packard. View all of NCWIT’s supporters at http://www.ncwit.org/about/supporters

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