The ageing population is putting pressure on cancer screening programs.
The ageing population is putting pressure on cancer screening programs.

Microsoft debunks myth about girls working in STEM

THE myth that lack of natural talent has kept women out of STEM fields has been debunked.

A self-reinforcing lack of role models is to blame, says new Australian research.

To celebrate International Women's Day, flagship Microsoft Store in Sydney has commissioned research that indicates that, while there is a rise in girls interested in working in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), there is still a long way to go to inspire young women to explore and consider a career in this area.

The research reveals that, among young females aged 12-17 years old in Australia, 52% would be open to a job within the field of technology or science. Of the participants who said that they wouldn't explore a role in this field, 30% attributed this to the fact that they don't know enough about the jobs they could do, indicating that a large proportion of Australian girls are not being inspired or incentivised to find out more about STEM opportunities. 

Furthermore, while 95% of girls surveyed said it is important to have female role models in STEM, only 18% could name a female STEM role model, and none could name a modern-day figure, with Marie Curie, Ada Lovelace, and Katherine Johnson topping the list. 

This perceived lack of opportunity and access has prompted Microsoft Store to partner with Tap Tap Comics to offer fun, interactive coding and animation workshops for young females, creating a chance to learn more about STEM and develop a passion for technology in a supportive environment. 

During the April school holidays (Monday 22nd April to Sunday 27th April 2019) girls aged 12-17 years will have access to exclusive, each featuring Captain Marvel, the first female superhero movie from the Marvel universe, which premieres on International Women's Day. 

Jessica Erhart, Community Development Specialist at the flagship Microsoft Store in Sydney says, "By providing young girls the opportunity to learn, experience and be inspired by careers in STEM, we can create a real change to the future of the STEM industry. Microsoft Store has created an innovative learning environment, where every young woman from any background can feel included, supported and empowered. These latest workshops aim to inspire young women, both with a strong on-screen role model and the opportunities for them within STEM."

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