Remember when you were younger and you had just mastered all your Alphabets? You couldn’t wait to share the sing-a-long at home.. well now you have to learn something else..
We’d never heard of Anna Correy Scull* until today and if truth be told we probably would never have known who she was unless we were digging for something specific, like, ‘middle-aged women getting into tech’.
Anna graduated from DeSales University of Philadelphia in 1996 with a B.S. degree in Computer Science at the age of 75. Yes you read right…3 score and 15. Bear with us here, there is a point!
If you’re not familiar with the global push on tech education or seen enticing adverts on how to become a #coolcoder, then we don’t know what rock you’ve been living under.
Like it or not, there is an element of technology in everything. Apps for ordering your favourite pizza or taxi, kindles to read your favourite books, Spotify replaced CD’s, Netflix for DVD’s, photo albums are extinct, kids homework is completed, signed and marked online, no one carries cash in their wallet and soon we won’t need to carry anything. Come to think of it, looking at the process of booking a flight, checking in and travelling has rare interactions with other humans other than when you are about to board…and that won’t be for long.
We could go on but you get the picture… we are surrounded by innovation and it’s not going anywhere soon.
The shocker for us though is that statistics paint a dismal picture of how many women actually work in the industry. The idea of modern technology is no longer something we can sideline. It’s already an integral part of our life and is (dare we say) as important as learning the Alphabets or Mathematics times tables; the fundamental foundation of education.
Earlier in the year, Deloitte has released its Technology, Media & Telecommunications Predictions for 2016.
The report states that by the end of the year, fewer than 25% of digital jobs will be held by women in the UK. This is the same statistic as 2015, and may even see a decline by the end of the year. In 2014, only one in twenty of the job applicants were women.
It also states that education statistics reflect poorly on equality, with only 17.1% of computer science students being women in 2013/2014. Let’s not even get into the unconscious bias spiel. The ratios are a tad bit out of balance don’t you think?
Ok so to the point… What has Anna got to do with this report? Well, for a start she’s female and she had just hit 70 when she decided to get her tech degree, TWENTY YEARS AGO!! We’re in our late 30’s now and before the discovery of this fearless woman, we thought, “What, us, learn tech, now? Nah, not possible….too many millennials speaking Klingon at hackathons”…
But I’m not sure we really have quantifiable excuses anymore. So what are we waiting forladies.. ?! Python anyone?