The artistic side of engineering

Article Day 7.

Giving Women the Access Code

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/03/science/giving-women-the-access-code.html?ref=science

What intrigued me?

— When I saw the headline I instantly related this article to engineering here at UIUC. A vast majority of my classmates are males and there are only a few girls in each of my engineering related classes. It also said that the percentage of women in computer science is dropping which I found interesting because I had been thinking it was going up like the other fields. Also, the main picture was of Bill Gates so that caught my attention too.

How does it impact me?

— Because of the lack of women in the field, colleges are attempting to show them them computer science isn’t all about computer programming. In addition they are coming up with scholarships for women to attract them to the field. I’m not entirely sure how UIUC is doing compared the the national averages but there will probably be an increase in women in computer science here within the next few years. And this might even lead to an increase in similar majors too. The one downside I see to this though is that I am in the majority, white male, so these scholarships that are being made are not applicable to me, which doesn’t seem entirely fair. But there are other scholarships out there.

Important points?

  1. The percentage of women in computer science has dropped from 37% in 1985 to 22% in 2005. Now it’s down to 18.2%
  2. Some colleges are even changing their programming language from Java to other ones that are more user friendly to attract more students
  3. This was done in 2005 and since then the colleges that implemented these changes have seen a good increase in the percentage of females
  4. After seeing what Harvey Mudd has done, other schools such as Stanford are working to do the same thing

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