Celebrating Women and Girls in Science
Happy International Day of Women and Girls in Science!
We are thrilled to celebrate the advancement of gender equity in STEM. Even though women have made great strides in the industry, we know that a gender gap still exists in representation and pay. According to the National Science Board, women make up 47% of the current workforce, but only 28% of the current science and engineering workforce. Of this percentage, women of color comprise about 5%.
Why does gender diversity matter in STEM?
- By being more inclusive, the likelihood of scientific success is higher, promoting economic growth and competitiveness.
- 49% of the world’s population is female, yet only 28% of women are represented in the STEM workforce. By advancing women in STEM, we are including more talent to solve the world’s great challenges. We need more STEM professionals.
- Diverse perspectives are critical to problem solving and innovation.
How do we promote gender-diversity at Digi-Bridge?
- We utilize research-based practices on engaging females in STEM such as SciGirls Strategies in program and curriculum development.
- We utilize female role models and mentors in our programs to shine a light on amazing women in STEM.
- We are involved with women advancing programs such as SHEcanCODE, Fleurix Conference and more.
On February 10th, Digi-Bridge was honored to partner with Honeywell to host a panel discussion with four female leaders in science and technology. This program was produced for our school STEAMLab partners. (Watch the Women in STEM Virtual Panel).
Panelists included Christie Newsome, Director of Engineering, Engineering Solutions at Honeywell Intelligrated; Lisa Butters, AERO General Manager GoDirect Trade, powered by Honeywell; Phoebe Henson, Advanced Systems Engineer – Human Space R&D at Honeywell Aerospace; and Danielle Evans, CIO, Honeywell Connected Enterprise.
As Honeywell #futureshapers, the four panelists discussed their technical careers and the role women play in innovation and advancement of technology.
They also shared more about their journey to becoming engineers, scientists and technologists, citing the importance of hard work, role models, and pursuing programs such as Digi-Bridge.
Newsome told students she was originally on a different path. “I went to our community skills center and that is where I was introduced to robotics and STEM and it really shaped my career path going forward,” she said. Newsome went on to study electrical engineering at Kettering University.
“I became interested in engineering back when I was in high school,” Henson told students. “I really enjoyed math and I also loved physics and every science class I took I liked, but I especially loved physics! Knowing engineering has a lot of math and physics I was comfortable choosing it as my degree.”
Lastly, the panelists shared critical advice to our students listening in to inspire them to follow their heart and interest into STEM careers.
“Never shy away from tough or challenging projects or assignments,” Evans encouraged. “Take charge and sometimes even take the lead. Never shy away from things that seem out of your comfort zone.”
Butters reminded the students that STEM can be found in anything.
“Think about the things you love today,” Butters said. “Maybe it’s TikTok! What on there interests you? Is it the cooking? Is it the makeup? Makeup is science! I’d encouraged you to look at what you like to do and see how it relates to STEM, because everything in essence is related to STEM”
Thank you, Honeywell, for helping us create this experience for our students on such an important day!
If you are interested in learning more about supporting women in STEM with Digi-Bridge, here are some meaningful ways to get involved:
- Register for Fleurix’s Virtual Women in Tech Conference on March 25-26. Free!
- Donate to Digi-Bridge to sponsor girls to attend our SHEcanCode summer programs.
- Read more about gender disparity in STEM and advocate for companies to learn more about its pay and representation gaps and come up with tactful solutions.