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Free online workshop offers a STEM of opportunities for women

Published:25 September 2020

TOP: Dr Meena Jha . BOTTOM: Women in Technology (WinTECH) society members.

A CQUniversity- led workshop will bring together women in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) to provide professionals, students and industry partners an opportunity to share practice, swap ideas, and build networks (Saturday 3 October).

The Advancing Young and Mature Women in STEM+C Education virtual workshop will be run by the Women in Technology (WinTECH) society to inspire and educate women in STEM industries.

As a woman in STEM herself, event organiser and Senior ICT Lecturer Dr Meena Jha has a passion to develop initiatives that support equal opportunity for people of all genders to learn, work and engage in STEM.

“STEM is among the fastest-growing industries. According to research among graduates, men are more likely (41.5% in 2016) to work in STEM jobs than women. Research suggests that in 2019, women accounted for less than a quarter (23.6%) of those working in STEM and related occupations,” she said.

“More emphasis on gender equality is needed for innovation purposes. STEM skills are the foundation on which the Australian workforce, industries and the economy will thrive.”

With a focus on the topic of data science, participants can expect to leave the full-day workshop with a grasp of Python and Excel for data analytics, alongside networking opportunities with key leaders in STEM.

Data Science is one of the sought-after areas in today’s world. All organisations require to analyse data for decision making,” Dr Jha said.

“The rate of adoption of automation based on big data, the internet of things, and artificial intelligence, across all Australian industries, is escalating.”

While Dr Jha said she's seen positive changes driven through women in STEM initiatives, more needs to be done to meet demands of STEM jobs in the future.

"The McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) report shows that increasing the number of women in STEM can equate to an additional $12 trillion in the global GMP by the year 2025,” she explained.

“Hon Minister Karen Andrews has launched an initiative on Advancing Women in STEM and the Liberal National Government is committed to improving the participation of women in STEM across all fields.

“However, all motivation starts from home. Parents need to be encouraging their daughters to stick with their STEM studies.”

To register for the free Advancing Young and Mature Women in STEM+C Education workshop visit: https://www.cqu.edu.au/events/event-items/information-session/advancing-young-and-mature-women-in-stemc-education