Women working with Datapac are giving their time to work with girls participating in CodePlus to provide them with IT career role models.
Irish IT company Datapac is working with Trinity Access Programme (TAP) to encourage girls and young women to pursue tech careers.
Some of Datapac’s employees are giving their time over to sharing their own stories and experiences of working in tech.
They are doing this as part of TAP’s CodePlus initiative, which is an established programme that gives young girls the opportunity to explore careers in computer science. CodePlus has reached more than 10,000 young girls to date.
As part of its involvement in the scheme, Datapac’s women employees have been discussing what it is like working in tech and participating in informal student-led Q&A sessions.
The company’s goal is to provide girls with real-life examples of women who work in IT. Datapac is also keen to highlight that careers in tech can span multiple industries, such as entertainment, fashion, education and medicine.
Datapac, which has been in business for more than four decades, recently set up a scheme that lets employees take an additional three days of paid leave a year to do voluntary work in their communities.
Commenting on the company’s involvement with CodePlus and TAP, software developer Luciana Fragoso said, “Datapac is thrilled to be involved with this initiative which echoes our own drive to promote equality and inclusiveness in the tech sector.”
She said that providing “ready access to role models is important” when encouraging young students to consider further study and careers in technology.
The earlier girls are given the opportunity to engage with tech and think about careers in the sector, the better, she added.
“It’s great to have partners like Datapac working with us,” said Niamh Ellis of TAP. The organisation is part of Trinity College Dublin, and it is dedicated to providing access to third-level education to underrepresented groups.
“Many of our students don’t have obvious female ‘techy’ role models in their lives,” Ellis explained. “Helping them to understand what it’s like to study computer science, and to see the wide range of career opportunities in the IT industry, is a key aim of the CodePlus programme. Hearing about the career path and day-to-day experience of women in IT helps make the whole thing real, and a bit more achievable, for the students.”
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