We get this question a lot…
In elementary school, 66% of girls like science as much as boys do, but only 24% of the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) workforce is women. In high school, girls score equally well on the AP computer science exam.
In college, women make up about:
• 57% of undergrads
• 52% of math and science majors
• 18% of computer science majors.
Interestingly, it has not always been this way. The first computer programmers were women. In 1985, 36% of computer science majors were women, so things are getting worse in computer science.
Despite these numbers, come college graduation, when it is time start working, only 24% of the workforce in STEM fields are women… despite women being 49% of the workforce.
Why are fewer girls pursuing STEM? Well…
Girls are often not encouraged to pursue classes, clubs, and other activities in the sciences, technology, engineering and math. Even chess clubs in elementary school are predominately boys. Some girls start feeling alienated when taking these classes or joining these clubs; they often are often one of a few girls in the class, which can create feelings of isolation and intimidation, ultimately leading to the girls turning to other pursuits.
Boolean Girl creates a welcoming environment for learning computer programing, where girls do the programing with others girls. We work on projects that are not only fun, but interesting. We want girls to know that computer science includes working side-by-side with their best friend all day. We want them to realize they can apply their creativity to solve difficult and important real world problems through computer programming.
In less than 8 years, the United States will need 1.7 million more engineers and computer scientists. Adding women strengthens the talent pool and leads to better creativity, innovation, and productivity.
Ultimately we want this to lead to the girls developing a passion for the field, which will eventually result in more women in computer science careers. Aside from providing a stable income, we think computer science careers are interesting and exciting, offering an unlimited possibilities for women.