NATIONAL CENTER FOR WOMEN & INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY LAUNCHES GLOBAL ALLIANCE FOR TECHNICAL WOMEN

January 23, 2012

Affinity Group Alliance provides women’s technical groups with resources, connections, and a national platform

The National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), a coalition of universities, corporations, and non-profits working to increase women’s participation in technology and computing, has launched an Affinity Group Alliance to unite and support groups that serve technical women.

Around the country, national and local “affinity groups” provide networking, mentoring, professional development, and more to thousands of women in the technology workforce. The NCWIT Affinity Group Alliance will provide its member groups with access to free, research-backed NCWIT resources for recruitment, retention, and advancement of technical women; connections across groups for leveraged actions and ideas; participation in national outreach and awareness campaigns; publicity for local and national efforts; and opportunities for expert speakers and research engagements.

The founding members of the NCWIT Affinity Group Alliance, who represent over 70,000 women working in technology around the globe, include:

  • Bank of America Women in Technology & Operations (WIT&O)
  • Brocade Women in Networking (WIN)
  • Coolest Women We Know
  • EDUCAUSE Women in IT Constituent Group
  • Girl Geek Dinners
  • Independent Oracle Users Group (IOUG)
  • Microsoft Women Employee Resource Group
  • Qualcomm Women in Science and Engineering (QWISE)
  • She’s Geeky
  • SIM Women
  • Women @ Intel Network
  • Women & Hi Tech

“SIM Women has always focused on developing and improving the individual woman; times now demand we think beyond the individual good and focus on the greater good,” said Kristen Lamoreaux, SIM Women founder. “Through the NCWIT Affinity Group Alliance, women’s IT organizations can work toward improving corporate environments across the U.S., benefiting today’s and tomorrow’s generation of female IT leaders.”

Women currently comprise more than half of the U.S. professional workforce but hold only one-quarter of technology occupations. Although 74% of women in technology report “loving their work,” 56% of technical women become dissatisfied and leave their jobs at the mid-career level to pursue a different career field, start their own companies, or join the public sector.

“NCWIT already works with the employers of technical women to help them reform their workplace environments -- eliminating gender bias, improving supervisory relationships, and clarifying hiring and promotion practices,” said NCWIT CEO Lucy Sanders. “The NCWIT Affinity Group Alliance will help work on the other side of that equation, helping technical women obtain the resources and support they need to flourish in technology careers.”

About NCWIT

The National Center for Women & Information Technology is a non-profit organization of organizations that works to increase diversity in technology and computing. NCWIT’s work focuses on recruiting, retaining, and advancing women across the entire spectrum: from K-12 through college education and from academic to corporate and entrepreneurial careers. Find out more at http://www.ncwit.org.