NCWIT is the National Center for Women & Information Technology, a non-profit organization chartered in 2004 by the National Science Foundation to increase the participation of girls and women in computing. Before NCWIT was formed, programs focusing on women and computing (K-12, post secondary, or corporate) existed mostly in isolation, without the benefit of shared best practices, effective resources, communication with others, or national reach. Today, NCWIT employs a three-prong strategy.
1. NCWIT Convenes
NCWIT unites individual efforts by crossing boundaries, bringing together more than 700 prominent corporations, academic institutions, startup companies, and non‑profits. These member organizations are grouped into five Alliances that are comprised of organizational change leader representatives who carry out projects and initiatives in support of NCWIT’s mission:
The Academic Alliance works toward institutional change in higher education.
The Affinity Group Alliance brings together national and local Affinity groups that provide support, networking, and professional development.
The Entrepreneurial Alliance helps young companies establish diversity at the start.
The K-12 Alliance works on the image and teaching of computing.
The Workforce Alliance leads efforts in corporate organizational reform.
The Social Science Advisory Board advises NCWIT and its members on projects and evaluation.
These change leaders convene annually at the NCWIT Summit, a three-day event where collaborative conversations lead to action and produce positive results for others to follow.
2. NCWIT Equips
With support from the NCWIT Social Science Advisory Board, NCWIT provides free, online research-based resources for reform at every level to help individuals implement change, raise awareness, and reach out to critical populations. These frequently cited resources include data, research reports, practices, curriculum materials, comprehensive toolkits, posters, workbooks, talking points, webinars, and videos.
3. NCWIT Unites
As a grassroots organization, NCWIT provides action platforms that involve NCWIT members in creating national change efficiently and quickly. Such initiatives include NCWIT Aspirations in Computing (a sweeping national talent development initiative for young women in computing, from kindergarten through graduate school) and Sit With Me (a virtual advocacy campaign that provides a gathering place for individuals to acknowledge the valuable contributions of women in computing).