Blog > September 2021 > A Millennial’s Perspective on Being a Woman in Tech

A Millennial’s Perspective on Being a Woman in Tech

First, I would like to thank the generations before me for shattering barriers and paving the way for a future where more women feel they belong in tech careers. Because of their fight against discrimination, I’ve been lucky enough to see my female mentors actively having a seat at the leadership table, allowing me to see that my career aspirations are achievable and not a distant dream. I will be forever grateful for this progress and to have personally benefited, but there’s more work to be done. 

As a 33-year-old millennial who has worked in the male dominated technology and aerospace industries for the past 11+ years, I have (for the most part) been very fortunate to escape the roadblocks and prejudices that many of my predecessors have faced. However, the tech industry still clearly has a gender imbalance and needs to diversify. U.S. Census research shows an increase from 8% to 27% from 1970 to 2019 for women in STEM careers, with those numbers being even less promising for women of color. Of the 27% of women working in tech, Asian women make up just 5% of that number, while Black and Hispanic women accounted for 3% and 1% respectively. A 2020 report from McKinsey found that diverse companies perform better, hire better talent, have more engaged employees and higher retention rates than companies that do not focus on diversity and inclusion. So why is the tech industry disproportionally missing out on the benefits of diversity and so widely lacking female, minority and LGBTQIA+ employees? 

Changing Young People’s Minds 

Three years ago, I attended ASG’s first Women Leaders in Technology event and had the privilege of hearing personal stories from the attendees. Hearing their struggles and their experiences was a truly eye-opening experience as to why women may still view the tech industry as a “boys club.” I think that we need to change that frame of mind for younger generations, so everyone sees it as a safe and viable career path, but in order to do that, we all need to continue/start to do the necessary work to ensure that is the reality.

I am proud to be a part of a company whose core values are empathy, humanity, trust and love and that we are on a journey to create an even more inclusive community that recognizes all forms of diversity and fairness. Rocket is dedicated to embedding inclusiveness into every aspect of the organization through its Rocket Inclusion, Diversity and Equity (RIDE) initiative. As a part of this growing community, I’m excited to continue my work contributing to these efforts. I am also inspired by the efforts of everyone doing work in this space, some of which ASG has highlighted on our weekly podcast such as the Open Tech Pledge and AnitaB.Org.  

Millennials Are Helping to Push the Tech Industry Forward 

The word “millennial” often carries a negative connotation, but millennials have actually been described as one of the most adaptive and creative generations, especially in our careers. We recognize where things started and where we still need to go. I’m excited to have the opportunity to support and witness the further progression and inclusivity of ALL women in this industry, making sure we hold each other up and that everyone has their voice heard. I can’t wait for the day when a table full of female executives and a team full of female IT workers is the norm and for someone to not even have the thought cross their mind of how lucky they are to witness that. Now is the time for diversity in tech. 

Join Our Community 

Our next Women Leader’s in Technology Coffee Talk is on October 6th during EVOLVE21 with two special guests, Rocki Howard, Chief Diversity Officer at SmartRecruiters, and Sharra-Owens Schwartz, Sr. Director of Diversity, Inclusion and Equity at Rocket Software. They are two women who are passionate about humanizing diversity, fostering psychological safety and elevating corporate cultures. You can RSVP here if you’d like to join this community and the conversation! 

Posted: 9/30/2021 8:00:00 AM by Amanda Nick - Field Marketing Manager
Filed under :DEI, Leadership, Millennial, STEM, Technology, WLIT, Women