CTA hosts SheTech Explorer Day to inspire young female techies

Monday February 11, 2019 0 comments Tags: Denver, Colorado Technology Association , SheTech Explorer Day, Frannie Matthews, Colorado Technology Foundation

DENVER -- On Feb. 8, Colorado Technology Association hosted SheTech Explorer Day Colorado, a day-long immersive event where 150-plus 9th and 10th grade female high school students from across the state learned what it’s like to work in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).colorado-technology-association-logo

As the technology sector continues to evolve, CTA said many companies are having difficulty finding qualified workers to fill in-demand, high-tech jobs.

“Clearly, women are under-represented in the technology industry across the nation and here in Colorado,” said Frannie Matthews, CTA president and CEO.

“The Colorado Technology Foundation supports a skilled, diverse tech talent pipeline for Colorado, and events such as SheTech provide hands-on experience led by role models from our local tech industry to help these girls envision their future in tech.”

Friday’s event brought together 150 students from more than 10 school districts across the state. Presented by PwC and hosted by Colorado Women’s College at the University of Denver, the SheTech event included interactive workshops, hands-on exercises and career-focused dialogue alongside 19 technology industry partners and more than 50 mentors. 

As part of the event, Lt. Governor Dianne Primavera welcomed the students. In addition, students participated in an industry-led TechChallenge of designing an app and solving a real-life problem with technology solutions and pitching their idea to a panel of judges.

“PwC is driving educational change in the U.S. by investing in innovative programs and collaborating with the organizations developing them to increase access to quality, cutting-edge education for underserved populations,” said Laura Skladzinski, director of management consulting at PwC.

“PwC is committed to closing the gender gap in technology and leadership roles, and we are honored to be a partner in bringing the SheTech event to life and providing the opportunity for these students to see the best of what the Colorado technology industry as to offer.”

CTA said technology is the foundation of many industries and there is a growing and urgent need for skilled, diverse technology talent in Colorado and beyond. It is projected there will be 3.5 million U.S. computing-related job openings by 2026, yet only 26% of the computing workforce was women in 2017.

Other SheTech industry partners included AT&T, Swiftpage, University of Denver, Microsoft, Firstbank, Zayo, SendGrid, Healthgrades, Xero, Lewan Technologies, Computershare, Galvanize, Comcast, CenturyLink, Conga, Kroenke Sports, Dish and mindSpark Learning.