Google has strengthened its support for women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, becoming Technology Partner for the acclaimed Superstars of STEM program.
The program, run by Science & Technology Australia (STA), aims to smash gender assumptions and empower leading female scientists, technologists, researchers and educators to become well-known public role models.
CEO of STA, Kylie Walker, said the program provides the skills, opportunities, and networks to support and connect a broad variety of Australian women in STEM with Australians from all walks of life – from young school students and their families to decision-makers in corporate, academic and political Australia.
“Less than one-third of Australia’s tech workforce is female, with even fewer women in senior ranks: we can and must do better to showcase women technologists in the media and on stage, to shift cultural expectations for recruitment and retention of women in tech,” Ms Walker said.
“The latest global study on women in the media showed that only 19% of science and technology experts quoted in the news are female.
“This statistic is exactly what we’re trying to reverse. Superstars of STEM has already made a major contribution to redressing this balance, with participants featuring in thousands of news clips nationally and internationally, as well as building their social media profiles and stage presence.”
Speaking at an International Women’s Day Breakfast in Melbourne where the announcement was made, Google Australia’s Engineering Community and Outreach Manager Sally-Ann Williams said after participating in the inaugural program as a mentor, she had seen first hand the impact of the program on both the participants and the mentors.
“Creating opportunities for these STEM professionals to make their mark not only inspires others to follow in their footsteps, it also leads to real impact on the community,” Ms Williams said.
“The network these women establish will benefit them in the years to come as they continue to take on leadership roles and grow their influence in their chosen fields and beyond.”
Google joins other Superstars of STEM partners including GE, Brighter, STEM Matters, the Australian Science Media Centre, and The Conversation.