In an effort to address issues of gender equality and empower female advancement, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in Tampa hosted an event called “Hands on Technology” (HOT) to train young girls in various areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. On Friday, April 6, 2018 twenty pre-selected girls visited PwC to learn more about programming and engineering. The “H.O.T” event will welcome middle and high school girls from Eckerd Connects’ Camp E-Nini-Hassee, an outdoor therapeutic camp for girls working to overcome personal obstacles. For most of the girls, this event will be their first opportunity to learn about topics in engineering.
“So many of these young girls have the intelligence and capacity for these mathematics and technology, but they simply haven’t been afforded the opportunity to explore them,” says Mary-Helen Horne, Market Operations Leader at PwC. “We want to change that. PwC understands, firsthand, the importance of diversity in these roles, and it begins with opportunity.”
The “Hands on Technology” agenda included lessons in cryptography, programming, drones, computer assembly, and cybersecurity. It is part of the company’s effort to change the substantial gender gap in engineering and computer careers, and women’s overall underrepresentation in STEM. PwC’s Women in Technology Program highlights the various types of technology careers and gives advice to women on how to succeed in the field.
Several of the event trainers are IT leaders at PwC who expressed excitement at the opportunity to involve young women in the world of technology. Their exercises included in-depth, hands-on instruction in an environment where the girls felt comfortable to ask questions and experiment. The company plans to host “Hands on Technology” every year.