Lobbying For Diversity And Inclusion In STEM

April 29, 2016

Lobbying For Diversity And Inclusion In STEM

By: Wendy Durica

For this week's Tech & Culture Blog, Wendy Durica, SQA Automation Team Lead and founder of the Datto Women In Technology Group, discusses STEM and her recent experience as a Lobbyist for a Day. 

As a woman working in the technology field, one of the things I’m most enthusiastic about is inclusion and diversity in STEM (science, technology, education and math). It’s imperative that women go out and show themselves as role models in the technology industry. As part of the Society of Women Engineers, I recently had the opportunity to go to Washington, D.C. to be a “Lobbyist for a Day” and support this cause.

As a ‘lobbyist’, I was placed in a small group with nine other women engineers from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Massachusetts. Our day of preparation started with some pep talks from various congressional staff members and meeting in small groups with politicians to discuss the importance of women in technology and STEM. Our goal was to promote diversity, inclusion and awareness.

In addition to politicians, I met 99 other women in the technology field. It was a unique experience that allowed people from various backgrounds to share experiences and work together for our common goal.

To me, it comes down to looking at the next generation. Seeing the numbers of women in technology decline, we must try new things and do our part. If this helps get more money into education and subsequently more kids interested, then we’re doing something right. As we say, we’re going to keep doing this until people say coding is ‘a girl thing’.