DOWNERS GROVE, Ill., April 23, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --Information technology (IT) industry leaders who've enjoyed success in their careers are invited to join non-profit association CompTIA in a new effort to bring more women into the technology workforce and to help them Dream IT.
Dream IT is a new evangelism platform to empower girls and women to pursue degrees and careers in technology. CompTIA, through its Advancing Women in IT Community, is encouraging technology business owners, executives and leaders to get involved in the effort.
"Our goal is to create a grassroots movement and reach 10,000 women and girls with information about the opportunities, rewards and value of IT professions," said Nancy Hammervik, senior vice president, industry relations CompTIA.
Hammervik will speak about the initiative today at the Channel Focus North America event in Phoenix.
"Through Dream IT, women currently employed in the industry, those who aspire to join us and men who support our mission will be equipped to go into their communities and schools and speak directly with women and girls about careers in technology," Hammervik said.
A full online set of resources – including presentation materials, videos and career information – will launch this summer. CompTIA has issued an immediate call for speakers in advance of the launch.
There are compelling reasons for women and girls to examine the IT field as a career option.
"IT is one of the fastest industries, one that's expected to be worth $5 trillion by 2020," Hammervik noted. "This explosive growth has made it an attractive career choice for millions of people around the world."
During the first quarter of 2014 there were 589,205 core IT job openings in the U.S, according to Burning Glass Technologies Labor Insights. That's a 26-percent increase over Q1 2013. Additionally, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that IT workers earn more than twice the national average yearly salary ($76,000 vs. $35,000).
The need to do more to bring women into the IT workforce is equally compelling. While women make up roughly half of the total U.S. workforce, they account for just 28 percent of core IT occupations.
"Young women can fill this gap, but we must do a better job of communicating their own potential first," said Hammervik.
Earlier this year CompTIA published a research brief titled Women Set on the Path to Success with a Career in IT. The report, available at http://www.comptia.org/members/default.aspx, is an example of free web-based content available to registered users as part of CompTIA's new open access model.
Anyone interested in being considered as a Dream IT speaker should contact Cathy Alper, manager of the CompTIA Advancing Women in IT Community, at [email protected].