Independent News For The Australian Public Service
Edition Number 411. Updated Tuesday, 27 May 2014

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Sky's the limit for tech girls

A new campaign to encourage more girls to take up careers in computing and information technology has been launched at the Australian National University.

The Tech Girls Are Superheroes campaign, launched by the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women, Senator Michaelia Cash aims to inspire schoolgirls to redress this balance and take up technology careers.

Dean and Director of the College of Engineering and Computer Science, John Hosking said the number of women studying and working in engineering and information and communications technology (ICT) had remained "stubbornly low".

New push to take up ICT careers

"There is enormous opportunity for women to enter these exciting and prosperous industries," Professor Hosking said.

They would solve some of the world's greatest problems and take part in developing innovative technologies that would shape our future, he said.

The campaign is based on an animated book containing stories of 26 talented technology and engineering "Tech Girls" written by Jenine Beekhuyzen.

"Tech Girls Are Superheroes is a fun and innovative storybook highlighting the fantastic opportunities in technology and engineering," Dr Beekhuyzen said.

"We promote thinking outside the box to create solutions that can enact social changes in society."

Female participation in ICT is 25 per cent, against 45 percent for other careers.

Senator Cash said she was delighted to attend the launch, ''but more importantly I was heartened by the dedication that was shown towards greater gender equality in non-traditional roles such as IT."

Dr Jenine Beekhuyzen, with her book
Tech Girls are Super Heroes.

Senator Michaelia Cash at the launch.

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