This week in our WiCipedia roundup: Watch your words to avoid the chopping block; Valley-ites expand to less tech-centric locales; LinkedIn works to close the STEM gap early; and more.
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One misconstrued comment could land you on the chopping block these days, which is what has happened to
Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL)'s Diversity Vice President Denise Young Smith, who has been at the company for only six months. Following her comment about what diversity really means last month at a conference, Smith issued an apology, but it apparently wasn't enough. To recap, during a speech onstage, Smith stated, "There can be 12 white, blue-eyed, blonde men in a room and they're going to be diverse too because they're going to bring a different life experience and life perspective to the conversation." Smith will be replaced by
Deloitte Development LLC 's Christie Smith, News One reports, while the original Smith has accepted a position as an executive-in-residence at Cornell Tech come 2018. Check out Christie Smith's powerful TEDx talk about the cost of not bringing your whole self to work below. (See WiCipedia: Herstory, Apple Diversity Stagnates & Queen Bees and WiCipedia: Gender Editors, Twitter Reform & How to Be Decent.)
LinkedIn Corp. is taking closing the STEM gap into its own hands with its high school trainee program. GirlTalkHQ explains that the Linkedin Women In Tech High School Trainee Program's goal is to "inspire the next generation of women in tech." The program matches high school girls with summer internships on software engineering teams, and so far, a staggering 96% of the girls plan to major in STEM in college. Erica Lockheimer, head of growth engineering and women in tech at LinkedIn, said, "Computer science is still considered by many to be a 'boys only' field, but this is clearly not the case. The High School Trainee Program aims to change this notion by mentoring female students, increasing their confidence, and showing them women do belong in STEM." (See WiCipedia: Int'l Day of the Girl & Sephora Shows the Ropes.)
A new article on Medium piqued our interest this week. Blockchain Engineer Preethi Kasireddy wrote about her decision to leave a successful career in Silicon Valley to pursue tech in Los Angeles. Though the article isn't specifically about her experience as a double minority in the Valley, it is about diversity, and how a lack of it can breed groupthink. Kasireddy writes that she realized the Valley had become particularly homogenous, and that there was no reason her home base had to be there when her entire job was in her computer. Furthermore, LA offers more diversity on all fronts: "Meeting a diverse group of people not just doing tech is frankly refreshing. I've had a blast learning from people who are in non-tech fields like fashion, media, entertainment, art, real estate, etc.," which can be inspiring in itself. Considering how hard hit many companies in Silicon Valley were in 2017, a change of scenery sounds like it may be a solid plan for many techies. (See WiCipedia: Girls Code, Valley Shame & GE's Big Plan.)
Women in venture capital (VC) are some of the rarest of the rare, and while many may think that's not a favorable position to be in, Kimmy Scotti, a founding partner at 8VC, a San Francisco VC fund, says that the rarity has a silver lining. In an article on Quartz, Scotti states, "In this industry, so much deal flow comes from the fact that founders remember you're a person they should be reaching out to and that you'd be a good partner. It's very easy to remember one of very few women in a sea of hundreds of men." She adds that the different viewpoints women bring to the table are also benefits. (See WiCipedia: Queen of Code, Female VCs & STEM Expectations.)
A new study finds that women pick up on tech skills better than men do. Forbes explains that the Brookings Institution's Metropolitan Policy Program's report, "Digitalization and the American Workforce," reveals "women are slightly ahead of men when it comes to developing tech skills needed for employment" in the US. Women received a composite score of 48 while men received a score of 45. The study was comprehensive, covering digital requirements for 90% of the US workforce, and taking into account "the knowledge, skills, tools and technology, education and training, work context, and work activities required." Hiring managers, we'll be watching you next time you say there just aren't minorities out there with the needed skillsets. (See Startup's President on Squashing Self-Imposed Setbacks.)
LONDON, 12/4/2017 – There are skill shortages in many emerging technology areas, such as artificial intelligence, notes Carolyn Dawson, managing director of the TMT unit for KNect 365, an Informa business. Attracting and training more women to the tech field will help the industry grow faster and better explore a broader range of possibilities. Dawson heads the ...
In a digital economy, a company's success is based on its relationship with the end user and the experience that customer has in using a product or service, says Sigma Systems CTO Catherine Michel, speaking as a panelist at Light Reading's Women in Communications luncheon in London earlier this month. A male-dominated environment will miss out on key aspects of ...
DENVER -- The tech industry is a vibrant, fast-paced place to be, but the industry could benefit from institutional changes to support more diversity, says Equinix CMO Sara Baack. Recent scandals have brought to light the need for more diversity, and Baack hopes this increased visibility will be the impetus for lasting change. In leadership, Baack encourages her ...
NEW YORK -- Sprint's Director of Technology Innovation & Architecture - Strategy, Planning and Development, Ginger McClendon, talks about how the future of network design will evolve with the advent of 5G and distributed architectures, while explaining the importance of learning from cellular surprises of the past.
NEW YORK -- Sprint's Director of Technology Innovation & Architecture - Strategy, Planning and Development, Ginger McClendon, explains that while she's noticed more women at tech conferences, the telecom industry can still be a difficult place for women to break into and continues to have a culture of being cutthroat. McClendon discusses why listening to her inner ...
LONDON -- Sigma Systems works to help CSPs become digital service providers, and that means tracking not just technology but many other trends and expectations, says CTO Catherine Michel. The biggest challenge today is doing all of that at a much faster pace than ever before.
DENVER, 10/5/2017 – Jill Stark, region president of enterprise sales for Sprint, shares her approach to leading a diverse team. In addition, Stark addresses the importance of seeking out mentors, and encourages women in the communications industry to take risks and step out of their comfort zone in order to meet their career goals.
LONDON, 9/26/2017 – At the recent Digital Futures event in London, Alexandra Rehak, IoT practice head at research house Ovum, talks about the ways in which network operators could generate new revenues from IoT.
New York is Silicon Alley. Israel? Silicon Wadi. And in Santiago, it's Chilecon Valley. Thirty years after the end of Pinochet's dictatorship, Chile has become one of South America's most vibrant economies. For the past six years, the government has given interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to entice startups to move to Santiago. Light Reading traveled to Chile ...
It's an art and a science to make mentorship, inclusive leadership, diversity and promotion of high-potential women work, says Honore' LaBourdette, vice president of Global Market Development at VMware.
Supporting women both inside and outside of Fujitsu is a top priority of the telecom vendor. Yanbing Li, Fujitsu Network Communication's director of System Software Development & Delivery, shares why it's important, but why there's still a long road ahead.