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  • Women are currently underrepresented in the Information Technology sector. This module is designed to provide workforce professionals with the tools they need to encourage women to enter or remain in a Information Technology career. This module was first conceived by Ruth Sweetser, co-founder of the IT Empowerment Group. Ruth shared her idea at an IT Empowerment Group, and Heather Sobecki of the the College of DuPage volunteered on behalf of the DuPage County IETC to pilot this program with case managers and counselors. Ann Marie Rosen, a manager at the IETC, and Loraine Volz, director of the DuPage County Workforce Board, were instrumental in supporting the development and trial of this module.
  • As you can see, there are a number of different organizations that are working to support this effort. Some of these organizations are private, some public, some non-profit, some for profit, but they have all come together to help develop this presentation. In addition, these groups and organizations may serve as a valuable resource to you and your clients some day.
  • Carlene: Today we will cover the following topics, with most of our focus on the first 6. We will begin by discussing the traits needed by information technology workers. From there, we will talk about the current economic conditions as well as the future outlook for the information technology field. Next, we’ll share some unsettling statistics about decreasing number of women pursuing IT careers and the potentially damaging effect that could have on our industries in the future. We’ll then look more closely at the Information Technology industry, including the types and locations of jobs. Next, we’ll briefly look at the entry and transition points into IT careers that will help women map a new direction for their career. Finally, we will provide advice and resources that can be used with clients. So, let’s get started...
  • We’ve all seen the pages of want ads for Information Technology jobs. Some days there are more pages than others. However, what all these ads share in common is the type of person they are describing. If you read between the lines, this is what you see. Read the first paragraph. One of the challenges facing IT corporations, workforce professionals, and even women themselves is that the job descriptions are full of nerd words and techno-buzz—the jobs just often don’t sound very appealing. The descriptions tend to be highly math-focused, while the jobs themselves require logical thinking and reasoning skills vs. calculating and number crunching. Diane: When I was a junior in high school, our district built a small computer lab. In order to work with the computers, students needed the higher math courses, which, since I was going to be a writer when I grew up, I hadn’t taken. Because of that, I was banned from learning about a machine that I have used almost every day of my professional life. Carlene: I actually got into computers because of my strong interest and ability in math, but in 20 years of professional experience, I have never had someone ask me about cosines or tangents. It’s the logical thinking, reasoning ability, and quest for learning that is needed, which is certainly developed by the study of mathematics, but is also developed by many other courses of study, including music, graphic arts, and the study of languages. We’ll discuss more about the skills needed later in the presentation, but the important thing to keep in mind, is that the way we perceive and describe Information Technology may preclude a segment of employees from jobs they could excel at and enjoy.
  • Carlene: In spite of the current economic conditions, all indications are that technology jobs are not only here to stay, but there is strong growth in this job sector. According to the Department of Labor, 9 out of 20 of the fastest growing jobs are in IT, with the top three showing a 90 to 100% increase within this decade. In the third quarter of last year, 42% of IT hires were technical support workers. As we’ll see later in the presentation, technical support, is an easy entry point into IT for women, as is web and database development, which continued to grow at 5% even during this tough economic climate. Another area that continued to grow during the economic downturn was the gaming and electronics industry. This growth will be supported as the computer savvy 16-24 age group is growing more rapidly than the rest of the population. This segment will drive the development of new products and services, and is currently being watched by industries for predictions of hot new services. So, today’s economic conditions actually make it even more important for women to pursue technological careers, as that’s where the opportunities are.
  • Diane: Ok, so we know there are going to be Information Technology Jobs available, but why do women need information technology anyway? Well, the bottom line highlighted in the box says it all. The earning potential for women in IT is 60% higher than that earned by women outside of IT. This statistic becomes even more concerning in light of the fact that 50% of all households in poverty are headed by a woman. It’s also important to note that the U.S. Department of Commerce projects that by 2006, nearly half of all U.S. workers will be employed in industries that produce or intensively use information, technology, products, and services. We see that already today, where technology is revolutionizing almost every job sector including law enforcement, agriculture, medicine... The bottom line is that in order to provide economic self-sufficiency for women, we must provide them with a strong foundation in IT—a foundation that prepares them for the future and with the flexibility for reinventing themselves in a continuously changing job market. So, we see what IT can do for women, but what does the IT industry gain by including women in the ranks?
  • Carlene: Yes, the information technology industry needs women. All studies show that this recession is actually masking a deepening labor shortage in IT areas. Despite this fact, the number of women pursuing IT careers has actually dropped 9% since 1984. This makes computer science the only field in which women’s participation has actually decreased over time. If the situation remains as it currently is, companies will lack the people they need to operate at full capacity. With the Y2K initiative, companies began shipping programming jobs overseas, much as the manufacturing industry has. However, even if overseas programming continues to grow, industries need people to coordinate and manage an even more complex working environment. So, how are we going to meet this challenge. Well, we could increase the number of men in IT careers. The only problem with that is that men are leaving the workforce faster than they are coming in, while women are entering the workforce faster than they are leaving. Women are earning the majority of college degrees, including 57% of all bachelors and 59% of all masters, yet only 1.1% of undergraduate women are majoring in IT-related disciplines. So, the easiest fix is to encourage more women to pursue IT careers. Diane: In addition to labor shortages, businesses face threats to their financial bottom lines by not having women involved with product design and development. Women make many of the buying decisions for themselves and their families. As products include more and more technology, refrigerators that order food for you, washing machines that have a digital user interface, smart toys that use chips to create learning environments, businesses who can satisfy the needs of these consumers will prosper. What’s the best way to meet the needs of consumers—ensure that they are involved with product development. From a marketing standpoint, women without IT backgrounds will not be as interested in high-tech products and services, meaning that some of the new advances and services will continue to stall. So, we have a group of people who need solid, financial-rewarding careers and we have industries that will really need people. The challenge is bringing these two groups together. To help us do that, Carlene will now tell us more about the IT industry.
  • Carlene: Let’s start by defining Information Technology. (Read definition) The are many distinguishing differences between IT and computer literacy. Computer literacy is important as the numbers of industries and jobs require more and more technology. While IT focuses more on the development of this technology. This same distinction can be seen in the IT industry itself and directly impacts the types of companies and jobs available.
  • Diane: There are two basic types of IT companies. The first type, Users of IT, use technology to support their true business goals and objectives. Examples include hospitals, retail stores, non-profits, etc. The second type of company is the IT Providers. These companies actually produce IT products and services, which will be consumed by other companies in business-to-business transactions, or by individual consumers. Let’s take a closer look at these two types of companies, as they will determine the job skills applicants will need as well as the type of work they will be doing.
  • Carlene: Companies that Use Information Technology obviously have very different business goals and objectives. However, they usually have the following functions in common. They all ...(fill in from the list). We have mapped these functions to the IT career clusters, which we will discuss in a couple of minutes. Jobs at these types of companies tend to be more application based, meaning companies take existing, off-the-shelf programs and adapt them to the needs of their corporation.
  • Diane: Providers of Information Technology, on the other hand, develop the products and services that users need. Jobs at these companies tend to be more system-based and development orientated, meaning they require more original programming or the integration of multiple software programs into one cohesive product. Examples of these types of companies and the services they provide include (read the list). So, that’s the industry in a nutshell. Carlene will now talk about the core competencies people need to enter the IT field.
  • Carlene: We start by reviewing the competencies that cross all IT jobs. We will look at the additional specialization required by some IT jobs in the following section on career clusters. Certification Programs are gaining popularity across all industries. Certifications may focus on a particular IT vendor. For example, Cisco is a network and hardware provider. A person who becomes certified in Cisco products can then support Cisco networks and machines for IT users. Certifications are also based on job type. These certifications provide training on a particular job such as data management or project management and can be used as a differentiator and to build credibility. Certifications can help provide a quicker entry or transition into an IT career. They are particularly important for people who do not have a degree, but may have a great deal of on-the-job computer experience.
  • Diane: While certifications provide a quick entry into or a differentiation, for long-term advancement, people really do need a degree in an IT-related area. These degrees can vary from an Associate’s degree to a Doctoral degree. Background Info: Master of Information Technology & Management (MITM), a degree designed primarily for working professionals who seek a hands-on, laboratory based program which broadens and deepens their knowledge of new and emerging information technologies, the application and integration of these technologies and the administrative practices used in the effective management of these technologies.
  • Diane: In addition to certifications and formal education, IT candidates need some personal characteristics as well. Industry experts have identified the following skills as critical in achieving success in an IT career. Ironically, women traditionally excel at these skills. Although the misconception of IT careers involves the lone programmer who sits in a dark room writing code day and night, there are very few jobs structured that way. Most development projects are accomplished by a team of people. Completing a project involves getting buy-in from a large number of people. Candidates who can’t communicate well both formally and informally will have a difficult time succeeding. Developers need to be creative, especially in solving problems. Finally, they need to love to learn, as technology is constantly changing. Gone are the days that someone can get a Bachelor’s degree and be set for life. So, we have looked at the industry and the core competencies, the trick now is to apply those competencies to the job market.
  • Carlene: The NWCET has developed a list of career clusters that describe the types of jobs in IT. As we’ve seen, these are based on the needs of the industry. The next eight slides provide a high-level look at each of these clusters and are provided for your reference. For each cluster, sample job titles are given. Obviously titles and responsibilities vary between companies, but we want to give you an idea of the wide variety of the skills and careers in IT. The clusters include (scroll through the slides.)
  • Carlene: Programming and Software Engineering Includes the designing, coding, and testing of software programs.
  • Carlene: Database Development and Administration includes the design, administration, and maintenance of databases.
  • Carlene: Enterprise Systems uses problem-solving and analysis to help an organization maximize benefits from its IT investment.
  • Carlene: Network Design and Administration includes the design, installation, and support of an organization’s networks.
  • Carlene: Web Development and Administration includes the design, development, and maintenance of websites.
  • Carlene: Technical Support provides technical assistance, support, and advice to customers and other users.
  • Carlene: Digital Media produces multimedia and digital film projects.
  • Carlene: Technical Writing includes the creation and production of user documentation, help systems, and training materials for computer users.
  • Diane: Building on the career clusters and core competencies, this slide highlights the entry points into and the transitions within an IT career. We have color coded these boxes based on the career clusters so that you can see the relationships between the jobs. From personal experience, many women take an indirect route to a career in IT. The blue boxes on the outside show some of the common careers women enter from. The colors are as follows: Green – Programming and Software Engineering Dark red – Network Design/Admin Teal – Database Development and Administration Purple – Enterprise Systems Pink – Web Development and Administration Tan – Technical Support Orange – Digital Media Dark Brown – Technical Writing Blue – Entry Points into IT So, this is the path that offers women some valuable opportunities. Carlene is now going to discuss some advising guidelines for getting women on the IT path.
  • Carlene: This list provides some considerations for discussing IT with women. The first being that money talks—discuss the increased earning potential. Second, emphasize the true job requirements, not just one facet like math or hardcore research and development. There are many career options inside of information technology, and by only highlighting one aspect, we narrow people’s options. To accomplish this, highlight the people-orientated and social aspects of the job. Be cautious of gender stereotypes—your own and your clients. Women may believe that IT is male-dominated and not open to them. The way you describe the jobs and careers can make a huge difference in their perceptions. We understand the pain imposed by the current employment situation—people are running out of benefits—others don’t have the experience they need to pursue the career they are interested in. However, there are opportunities in IT out there—even now. As we saw, technical support offers an excellent avenue for entry level positions. The trick is to then use the map to gain necessary certifications and build a career path. Emphasize the flexibility people have to specialize in specific industries. IT is everywhere. With flexibility comes variety, make sure women realize they have many options with an IT career. The next few slides are for your reference. .
  • Diane: In addition to the information Carlene just shared, there are computer aptitude tests available that can help people determine if they have an interest in IT. These can help you determine people’s skills and interest in these areas. If you know of any additional resources in this area, we would appreciate you sharing them with us at the end of the session.
  • Diane: There is a lot of buzz about the future of IT, with some popular terms being Nanotech and Biotech. Nanotech has to do with making computer chips smaller and, therefore, more applicable to everyday life. For example, scientists have discovered that diamond dust is actually a much better conductor than silicon, so they are looking for ways to improve chip design based on this. Biotech fuses engineering and technology with the life sciences. Some people are combining a computer science degree and medical school. Argonne is looking for IT people with a biology background. We often read about the advances of biotech in the news, with discoveries such as Christopher Reeves new device that allows him to breath on his own. From West Virginia University: Forensic Computer Science is a brand new degree and career offering that is combining computer science, crime fighting, and security. While just being introduced, I’m sure this area will continue to grow. The Information Assurance and Biometrics Certificate provides a broad overview of the information assurance and biometrics field and addresses relative and recent advances and current research issues.  Included are the elements of biometrics technology, system security engineering, and principles of trusted systems. The course content of this program emphasizes ethical, economic, social, and legal impacts of biometrics technologies and information assurance techniques.   The Certificate in Forensic Computer Science will provide an immediate basis for those employed in the high-tech industry to improve their ability to counter threats to information systems, thereby increasing their value to organizations that employ them, and ensuring computer systems under their care are protected. The certificate program will also enable WVU to provide programs that attract FBI and other law enforcement agencies to enroll their officers in this program .
  • Diane: Obviously the job market is tight right now, placing even more emphasis on strong job hunting skills. This list provides information on mentoring and professional organizations that may serve as a resource for you or clients.
  • Diane: In addition, this slide includes possible resources for scholarships.
  • Carlene: This slide sums it all up.

Presentation File Presentation Transcript

  • 1. Charting the Road Less Traveled: Providing Women Access to Information Technology Funded by the College of DuPage Gender Equity and Education to Careers programs, in collaboration with the DuPage County Workforce Investment Board, DuPage Illinois Employment and Training Center, US Department of Labor Women’s Bureau and the IT Empowerment for Women and Girls Initiative. Developed by Carlene Smith and Diane Compton. A Guide for Workforce Professionals
  • 2. Acknowledgements
    • This presentation was made possible with the kind support of the following organizations:
      • DuPage County Workforce Development (www.ietc-dupageco.com)
      • DuPage County Workforce Board (www.dupage-wfb.com)
      • College of DuPage Tech Prep and Gender Equity (www.cod.edu)
      • DuPage Area Education to Careers and Tech Prep (www.dupage-etc.org)
      • Women Employed (www.womenemployed.org)
      • Women’s Bureau, U.S. Department of Labor (www.dol.gov/dol/wb)
      • American Association of University Women Gender Equity Fund (www.aauw-il.org/equity/equity.htm)
      • Illinois Center for Specialized Professional Support of Illinois State University (www.coe.ilstu.edu/icsps)
      • Women in Technology International (www.witi.com)
      • JAD Communications International (www.JADCommunications.com)
      • Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Office of the Women’s Business (www.commerce.state.il.us)
  • 3. Introduction
    • Topics Covered:
      • Characteristics of Information Technology Workers
      • Future Outlook of Information Technology Careers
      • Why Women Need Information Technology
      • Why Information Technology Needs Women
      • Definition of Information Technology
      • Where the Jobs Are...
      • Core Competencies for Information Technology Jobs
      • Career Clusters
      • Common Entry and Transition Points into IT
      • How to Advise Women about IT
  • 4. Characteristics of Information Technology Workers Wanted: Creative problem- solvers with strong reasoning, organizational, and communication skills to work with teams in developing, maintaining and utilizing, computer systems, databases, networks and web sites that are user friendly, graphical, convenient, and vital to the success of businesses, non-profits, and personal lives. Perks may include flexible work schedules and arrangements, including working at home and job sharing. Candidates will be able to work and specialize in a number of industries, including medical, financial, non-profit, retail, etc.
  • 5. Even Dilbert Was Laid Off... Are You Sure We Need More IT People?
    • Trends indicate that despite a short-term dip in IT employment, the need for IT workers is stabilizing and will continue to grow.
      • Nine out of 20 of the fastest growing jobs are IT-related.* The projections for percentage change between 2000 and 2010 range from 90% to 100% increase for the top 3 occupations.
      • In August-October, 2002, 42% of IT hires were technical support workers.**
      • Web and database developers climbed 5% since January 2002.**
      • IT managers indicate that they plan to hire 1.1 million workers in the months ahead.**
      • The computer savvy 16-24 age group is growing more rapidly than the rest of the population and will drive the development of new products and services.*
    * U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2002/03 Edition , Bulletin 2540. **“Computer workers need new skills, experience to beat tough job market,” Chicago Tribune, February 23, 2003, Section 6, Page 1. Source: Occupational Outlook Handbook
  • 6. Why Women Need Information Technology...
    • Provides means to economic self-sufficiency.
      • Narrows the digital divide—people without computer experience and internet access are being left behind economically, socially, and intellectually
      • Provides access to better paying jobs.
    • Prepares women for the future.
      • New services such as Distance Learning Applications, Text Messaging, Always-On Internet, Nanotech, and Biotech will drive job growth
      • IT provides the foundation women need to reinvent themselves in a continuously changing job market
      • The median annual earnings of women employed full-time in IT is over $38,000, 60% higher than the $23,900 earned by women outside of IT.*
      • In 2001, the median weekly earnings for workers in technology-oriented occupations ranged between $712-$1,174, compared to $597 for the median of all occupations.**
    • Opportunities and Gender Pay Equity in New Economy Occupations , The Council of Economic Advisors, May 11, 2000.
    • ** Employment and Earnings , U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, January 2001, pages 210-211.
  • 7. Why Information Technology Needs Women
    • Too many jobs for men alone to fill.
      • Men are leaving jobs faster than they are coming in. Women are entering the workforce faster than they are leaving.
        • ITAA (Information Technology Association of America) studies predict labor shortages in IT areas.
        • If the number of women in the IT workforce were increased to equal the number of men, this shortage would be avoided.
        • Estimates indicate that women will make up 57% of the workforce by 2005.*
      • Women are earning the majority of advanced degrees.
        • 57% of all Bachelors and 59% of all Masters degrees obtained by women.*
        • However, only 1.1% of undergraduate women are majoring in IT-related disciplines.**
    • Need diversity of thought in product design and development
      • To make products profitable and with better marketability to 50% of the consumers.
      • Make products that avert harm to women.
    Women receive less than 28% of the computer science bachelor’s degrees—down from a high of 37% in 1984. Computer science is the only field in which women’s participation has actually decreased over time. * Kleinman, Carol, “Gender Trends Demand Some Preparation, Chicago Tribune , February 25, 2003, Section 3, page 1. ** The Supply of Information Technology Workers in the United States, “Chapter 7: Women, Minorities, and Older Workers,” Computing Research Association.
  • 8. Definition of Information Technology
    • Information Technology (IT) is the study, design, development, implementation, support, and management of computer-based systems. The term ‘computer-based systems’ is defined broadly to include the full gamut of technological considerations including the
      • Design and production of chips
      • Design and creation of complex, computer-based systems including the design and development of the software and hardware systems, the creation and management of network systems and databases and the consideration of appropriate human factors
      • End-use of such systems
    • “Computer Literacy” is most concerned with the end-use of computer systems. The distinction in literacy vs. career is that the class of workers whose jobs are enabled by information technology is much larger than the class of workers considered to be “IT workers.”
  • 9. Where the Jobs Are... Two Types of Information Technology Companies
    • Users of Information Technology
      • Companies use IT to support other business goals
      • For example, hospitals, retail stores, non-profits, etc.
    • IT Providers
      • Companies that focus on providing IT products and services for others
      • For example, software development companies, hardware manufacturers, consultants
  • 10. Users of Information Technology
    • Most organizations must perform the following services:
    • Provide necessary business applications for people (Programming/Software Engineering)
    • Maintain and provide access to organization information (Database Dev/Adm)
    • Develop and maintain the companies computing environment (Enterprise Systems)
    • Ensure PCs can interact with each other (Network Design/Adm)
    • Support their people in using applications and technology (Technical Support)
    • Develop the company’s web presence and maintain a secure environment (Web Dev/Adm)
    • Develop online training or marketing information (Digital Media)
    • Develop Documentation and Marketing Materials (Tech Writing)
  • 11. Providers of Information Technology
    • Companies that provide Information Technology Services can can be large and multi-national or they may be home-based and independent.
    • Examples include the following:
      • Software Application Developers
        • Microsoft
        • Database companies
      • Hardware Manufacturers
        • Intel
        • Dell
      • Consulting and On-Site Project Support
      • Interactive Media, Video Editing, Graphics
      • Customer Support
      • Training/Documentation Developers
      • Telecommunications
      • Internet Service Providers
  • 12. Core Competencies: Certifications
      • Technical or Professional Certification:
        • Absolutely essential for candidates without a degree or an IT degree.
        • May help for those with degrees but not necessary.
        • Differentiator for advancement and salary increases.
          • According to the Brainbench “2002 IT Salary Survey Report” February, 2003 those receiving certifications are more likely to achieve salary increases above the industry average of 1% - 3%.
    •  
      • By vendor:
        • Cisco, CompTIA, Microsoft, Novell, Oracle, Prosoft, Sun
    •  
      • By job type:
        • Data Management, Help Desk, Networking and Telecommunications, Project Management, Software Development, System Administration, Web and Internet
    •  
      • By professional institute:
        • Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals,
        • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
        • Computing Society
  • 13. Core Competencies: Formal Education
      • Associate’s Degree
        • Generally more occupation-specific than a bachelor’s degree. Can be an entry level for the Programming and Tech Support clusters.
    •  
      • Bachelor’s Degree:
        • Computer Science
        • Information Science
        • Information Technology and Management
        • Management Information Systems (MIS)
        • Mathematics
        • Engineering
        • Physical Sciences
    •  
      • Graduate Degrees
        • Masters in above fields
        • MBA – Masters in Business Administration
      • Doctoral degree in Computer Science or Computer Engineering
    •  
  • 14. Core Competencies: People Skills
    • The following core competencies are required for a career in computers.
      • Computer Competency
      • Ability to work with little or no supervision
      • Interpersonal skills
      • Ability to work well in teams
      • Strong communication skills (written and verbal)
      • Excellent critical thinking skills
      • Creative, “Out-of-the-box” thinking
      • Knowledge-seeking with a love for continuing education
  • 15. Career Clusters: Applying Core Competencies to the Job Market
    • The following eight Career Clusters developed by the National Workforce Center for Emerging Technologies (NWCET):
      • Programming and Software Engineering
      • Network Design and Administration
      • Database Development and Administration
      • Enterprise Systems
      • Web Development and Administration
      • Technical Support
      • Digital Media
      • Technical Writing
  • 16. Programming and Software Engineering
    • Sample Job Titles:
      • Software Engineer
      • Software Tester
      • Software Development Engineer
      • Programmer/Analyst
    •  
    • Description:
      • Conceive, design, and test logical structures for solving problems by computer
      • Write, test, and maintain the detailed instructions, called programs, that computers must follow to perform their functions
      • Write programs according to the specifications determined primarily by computer software engineers and system analysts
      • Use conventional programming languages (e.g. COBOL), artificial intelligence languages (e.g. Prolog), or object-oriented languages (e.g. Java, C++, Smalltalk)
      • Update, repair, modify, and expand existing programs
      • Test and debug programs
    • Training Requirements:
      • Certifications in language
      • Degree
    •  
    • Skills:
      • Think logically
      • attention to detail
      • Patience
      • Persistence
      • Ability to work on exacting analytical work
      • Ingenuity
      • Imagination
      • Work with abstract concepts and do technical analysis
      • Good communication skills
  • 17. Database Development and Administration
    • Sample Job Titles:
      • Database Administrator
      • Database Developer
      • Database Analyst
      • Knowledge Architect
    •  
    • Description:
      • Work with database management systems software and determine ways to organize and store data
      • Determine user requirements
      • Set up computer databases
      • Test and coordinate changes
      • Ensure performance, understand the platform the database runs on, and add new users
    • Training Requirements:
      • Certifications in language
      • Degree
    •  
    • Skills:
      • Thinks about how parts fit together to make the whole work better
      • Likes puzzles
      • Tests constantly
      • Keeps things organized and in order
      • Gives careful attention to organization, procedure, and structure
  • 18. Enterprise Systems
    • Sample Job Titles:
      • E-business Specialist
      • Information Systems Architect
      • Information Systems Planner
      • Systems Integrator
    • Description:
      • Use problem-solving to help an organization realize the maximum benefit from its investment in equipment, personnel, and business processes
      • Most work with a specific type of system that varies with the type of organization they work for (e.g., business, accounting, or financial systems, or scientific and engineering systems)
      • Specify the inputs, design the processing steps, and format the output
      • May prepare cost-benefit and return-on-investment analyses
    • Training Requirements:
      • Product vendor certification
      • Continuous study due to rapid changes in technology
    •  
    • Skills:
      • think logically
      • good communication skills
      • multi-tasking
      • ability to concentrate
      • able to see the “big picture”
      • pay close attention to detail
      • work in teams
      • gathering technical information and presenting ideas
      • strong analytical skills
  • 19. Network Design and Administration
    • Sample Job Titles:
      • Information Systems Administrator
      • Network Administrator
      • Network Analyst
      • Network Technician
      • Systems Administrator
    • Description:
      • Design, install, and support an organization’s LAN, WAN, network segment, Internet or Intranet system
      • Day-to-day onsite administrative support for software users in a variety of work environments
      • Maintain network hardware and software, analyze problems, and monitor the network to ensure availability to system users
      • Gather data to identify customer needs and then identify, interpret, and evaluate system and network requirements
      • Plan, coordinate, and implement network security measures
    •  
    • Training Requirements:
      • Certification recommended
        • CompTIA’s A+ certification
        • CompTIA’s Network +
        • Network Management
        • one or more network operation systems
    • Skills:
    • Mechanical
    • People skills
    • Communication skills
    • Problem-solving skills
    • Patience
    • Flexibility
  • 20. Web Development and Administration
    • Sample Job Titles:
      • Web Administrator
      • Web Designer
      • Web Page Developer
      • Webmaster
    • Description:
      • Design, develop, and maintain websites
      • Develop websites using web development software or building from scratch using HTML
      • Develop interactive forms using computer programming languages like Java or Visual Basic  
    • Training Requirements:
      • A bachelor’s degree in graphic design is a plus
      • Formal training in Web or graphic design
    • Skills:
      • Good communication skills
      • Translate user needs into the web environment
      • Natural artistry
  • 21. Technical Support
    • Sample Job Titles:
      • Technical Support Representative
      • Customer Service Representative
      • Help Desk Technician
      • PC Support Specialist
      • Sales Support Technician
      • Maintenance Technician
    • Description:
      • Provide technical assistance, support and advice to customers and other users
      • Interpret problems and provide technical support for hardware, software, and systems
      • Analyze problems using automated diagnostic programs, and resolve recurrent difficulties
      • Install, modify, clean, and repair computer hardware and software
      • Field phone calls and e-mail messages from customers seeking guidance on technical problems
      • Assist remote web site and network users in accessing files and maintaining proper user connections
    • Training Requirements:
      • Certifications Recommended
        • CompTIA’s A+ certification
        • Help Desk Analyst certification (relatively new)
    • Skills:
      • Problem-solving
      • Analytical
      • Communication skills (paper, e-mail, in person)
      • Listening and Investigating skills
      • Writing skills
      • Patience
      • Flexibility
      • Knowledge of the software and hardware the customers use
  • 22. Digital Media
    • Sample Job Titles:
      • Multimedia Author
      • Multimedia Specialist
      • Multimedia Developer
      • Audio/Video Engineer
      • Animator
    • Description:
      • Produce multimedia and digital film projects
      • Design graphics and layout
      • Produce interactive media which combines sound and animation with user prompts
    • Training Requirements:
      • A bachelor’s degree in graphic design is a plus
      • Keep up with the latest technologies to produce the best images and animations.
    • Skills:
      • Teamwork skills
      • Communication skills
      • Visionary
      • Artistic
      • Creative
  • 23. Technical Writing
    • Sample Job Titles:
      • Technical Writer
      • Technical Editor
      • Instructional Designer
      • Electronic Publisher
    • Description:
      • Write user documentation and context-sensitive help systems for computer users
      • Produce instructional content for websites and other electronic formats
      • Make training information and documentation understandable and easy to read
    • Training Requirements:
      • A bachelor’s degree in English, Journalism or a technical degree with proven communication skills
      • A degree in Instructional Design or Education
    • Skills:
      • Teamwork skills
      • Communication skills
      • Ability to see both the big picture and the details
      • Persistence
      • Creative
  • 24. Common Entry and Transition Points into IT Architecture Writers, Journalists, Teachers, PR Call Center Operators Sales Reps from other fields Marketing Mgrs. from other fields Programming Enterprise Systems System Engineering Testing Technical Support Database Administration Data Entry Database Development Sales Product Management and Marketing Project Management Web Development Artists/ Graphic Designers Web Admin Network Design/ Administration Technical Writing Digital Media
  • 25. How to Advise Women about IT
    • When advising women about IT, keep the following considerations in mind:
      • Discuss the increased earning potential.
      • Highlight the true job requirements, not the stereotypical ones.
      • Highlight the people orientated and social aspects of the job over the perception of the isolated code developer.
      • Be cautious of gender stereotypes—your own and your clients.
      • Use the Entry and Transition Points chart to find short-term employment opportunities for people interested in IT.
      • Emphasize the ability to specialize in key industries like the medical or non-profit fields that tend to appeal to women.
      • Highlight the variety of options once inside the field—there’s always something new to do.
      • Stress that certification allows people to build on existing degrees to transition into IT careers.
  • 26. Computer Aptitude Tests
    • There are several computer aptitude tests available, including the following:
      • The IT Careers Interest Inventory
        • www.cybercareers.org
  • 27. Future IT Careers
    • Describe future opportunities in IT
      • Nanotech
      • Biotech (possibilities for nurses, physical therapists, etc.)
      • Forensic Computer Science
  • 28. Mentoring and Professional Resources
    • The following organizations provide professional support and networking opportunities for women interested in IT careers:
      • WITI (Women in Technology International) (www.witi.com)
      • AAUW (American Association of University Women) (www.aauw.org)
      • ChicWIT (Chicago Women in Technology) and other WIT organizations in major cities around the world (www.witi.com)
      • Society of Women Engineers (SWE) (www.swe.org)
      • US Department of Labor, Women’s Bureau (www.dol.gov/wb)
      • Women Employed (www.womenemployed.org)
      • Association of Women in Science (www.awis.org)
      • Institute for Women in Technology (IWT) (www.iwt.org)
    • On-line Mentoring provided by the following organization:
      • MentorNet: for undergrad students in science, technology, engineering, and math
  • 29. Scholarships
    • The following organizations are possible resources for financial support for women entering IT fields:
      • Women in Technology International (WITI)
      • American Association of University Women (AAUW) local branches—varies; national AAUW Education Foundation for fellowships
      • Soroptomist International
      • Zonta International
      • Illinois Institute of Technology (women and men transferring from a community college)
      • UIC (women and men)
      • Rotary, Kiwanis (women and men, not necessarily focused on IT)
  • 30. Conclusion: “And that Has Made All the Difference.”
    • The following actions will help make a difference:
    • Whenever possible, encourage women to explore IT.
    • Help women understand that IT is more than programming in “dark corners” and math-centric. IT is a huge field, requiring diversity in training and skills. There are many common entry and transition points.
    • Many of the most sought-after traits for IT professionals (teamwork, communication, and problem-solving) are skills that women excel at.
    • While every industry has experienced a downturn, trends indicate IT is still one of the fastest growing areas. We must continue to encourage women to explore IT.
    • We all benefit from having women at the design table of new products and services.
    Thank You.