Having female role models is essential for women in all professions but especially for women in STEM(Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). Female role models have a significant impact on girls’ interest in STEM as proven by a study conducted by Microsoft. The study found that because of female role models, the reported level of interest has doubled. Many others studies have concluded the same thing. In 2013, a study by The Glass Hammer and Accenture found that there was a strong correlation between women with role models and women with leadership goals.
With such a strong association, one can easily see the great importance and impact female representation makes, especially in fields dominated by males. For persons like me, this makes perfect sense. For some people, it can be hard to imagine being something you’ve never seen yourself represented in. When you meet similar people doing amazing things in a similar field to yourself, it reminds you that you can get there too.
WHY WE NEED FEMALE ROLE MODELS
Role models are key to changing perceptions. When more and more women are seen at the top of organisations or simply just involved in I.T. or other STEM fields, the more this concept and image will be regarded as the standard and inspire more girls to choose a path similar to them. Role models aim to not only inspire the girls and women of today but also the future generations to come. A simple quote, “If she can see it, she can do”, perfectly sums up the appreciable significance female role models have in Technology and other STEM related fields. For some girls they were lucky enough to have been surrounded by female role models. For other girls like me, it has been a real challenge but thankfully for programs like YCDI, I can see a great and wonderful change.
Think like a Queen. A Queen is not afraid to fail. Failure is another steppingstone to greatness
Written by: Kimberley Whyte