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Author Topic: Women Entering the IT Arena  (Read 6202 times)
anchor40
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« Reply #15 on: April 22, 2003, 04:42:43 PM »

My company has an EVP who is the Chief Diversity Officer, to make sure our workforce maintains diversity.  So now, if we post any job, and it does not return a certain quantity of diverse applicants, they must re-post to get more applications, even if all of the first run were 100% qualified for the job.

A whole lot of age, race, and sex discrimination under a "legal" umbrella.

But don't be discouraged.  Practice turning your school experiences into relational experiences, directly mapping to the question asked.  For example, "I did something just like that when I did blah blah blah..." and the blah-blah part is your school or other career field experience.

Cheesy
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DivxGuy
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« Reply #16 on: April 27, 2003, 08:31:01 PM »

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Don't let the nay sayers stop you , it's outthere you just have to make it happen
Indeed, there might be something out there, but will it require a lot more effort and pay less than something  in a hot field like nursing?

RD
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oddduck
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« Reply #17 on: April 28, 2003, 06:31:09 PM »

My moms getting a little pissy.  Last month I spent $500 on certification exams (canadian).  Oh well I think she'll forgive me Smiley
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DivxGuy
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« Reply #18 on: April 28, 2003, 07:39:31 PM »

As long as you passed them all, she should be pleased.

I think $CDN 500 in one month was about my record for exams (70-228, 70-217, 70-216). Fortunately I passed them all. Smiley

RD
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oddduck
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« Reply #19 on: April 29, 2003, 08:45:09 AM »

Yeah I passed them all (216, 217, I-Net+), but she also pays my rent ($400), tuition (over $1000/month), and my gas money/groceries, so yes, I'm a very expensive kid Smiley
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DivxGuy
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« Reply #20 on: April 29, 2003, 03:36:34 PM »

I dunno...I define an "expensive" kid as one who indulges in a lot of parentally-paid extravagences, ie luxuries like night life and fancy clothes. A lot of parents can only wish that their children were hard-working and ambitious.

RD
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ironbelle
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« Reply #21 on: April 29, 2003, 04:44:54 PM »

At this point, I wish I had not made this post. I was hoping to get views and opinions about women in the IT field. I did not ask how old you are, how your parents pay for everythingo, how many job offers you have received but cannot take them because of your classload. I did not ask for a male's negative opinion on what company discriminates against age and how you should not enter this career sector. I thought the forum I posted in was Women entering the IT Arena? It would have been nice if the responses were related to the post and not just someone spouting off about the price of tea in China.
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DivxGuy
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« Reply #22 on: April 29, 2003, 05:16:08 PM »

What's different about women entering in the IT field? It's a unisex field nowadays, and there are plenty of women in it.

A direct answer to your question as to how women (and men, for that matter) get experience in IT? When I started my last job (at a dot-com), there were four women doing IT work (one was doing business analysis, and three were doing development). Two doing development were senior developers, and the other was  mid-level. How did they (the three developers) get their initial experience? They got internships when they were working on their degrees (all had science degrees in areas like math and computer systems).

How did the four fare with the dot-com crash? Two of them are working for Microsoft, the third accepted a relocation, and the fourth is trying to make a go of it as best she can doing telecommuting work (I think she has earned some vendor certifications in the meantime).

RD
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anchor40
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« Reply #23 on: April 30, 2003, 09:41:37 AM »

ironbelle, never regret making a post.  If you don't get the response you hoped for, re-word the question and re-post!

As far as women in the IT field, there should be no doubt that the percentages of people still employed in the field.  Granted "IT" is very broad, and encompasses a large number of fields, like programming, system administation (PC and server), networking (routers and switches), etc.

To sum up several of the points made previously (which you somewhat discredited), the entire IT industry is depressed, but there are definitely opportunities for both male and female (it's now more unisex than ever).  

One final point, is that you don't necessarily have to have the hands-on experience with whatever job you're trying to get IF you can sell yourself and your comprable experience in a different field.  There are several books and articles around the web on how to put the positive spin on things!  For example, a housewife for 20 years got hired as a manager because she justified her 20-years of time management, budgeting, and procurement skills from the domestic world to directly relate to the job description, even though she had no degree.

HTH...:cool:
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mcpjan
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« Reply #24 on: May 19, 2003, 05:23:43 PM »

Well, as a female (older) I have had no problems getting jobs in the IT field. I retired from nursing after 20 years and have been in the IT field now for about 8 years. I am now working my second IT job and I am now as a System Engineer. I think knowing the information is very important. My current employer did not care about what I was certified in. At the interview I was given a 3 page test on a wide range of networking and desktop issues and then a small bag on pieces of hardware to identify. I can say now after working here 3+ years I still would not get everything correct on the form, but I known the answer for the questions that applied to what I was being hired for. So my point is, in most cases age does not matter but what you know does.
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DivxGuy
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« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2003, 12:31:46 PM »

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I can say now after working here 3+ years I still would not get everything correct on the form,
With all due respect, the IT job market was a lot different 3+ years ago. I had 2 job offers within three months back then, but in 2001-2002, I only had a single interview (and no offer), despite more experience and acquiring three premium Microsoft certs that would have been hot items in 1999.

RD
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SheilaTequila
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« Reply #26 on: May 20, 2003, 06:38:01 PM »

I'm 43 and working as a technical service rep (oh, so official) I decided on a career change at 37 and went to a local college in the IT program (3 years). I formerly worked for my father's construction company doing drafting and estimating so I was used to being the "wrong" gender for my job. Since I also decided to become separated at the same time, I took a lot of temp jobs along the way ... mostly data entry.

I lucked out on a job while I was in school and worked part time for one of my father's competitors who needed a database created for job estimates and a website built. I stayed on there for a while doing estimates until a contract postition became available where a friend from school was working. She was also a "mature" student and got her job on a friend's recommendation.

After almost 2 years worth of contracts there, I was hired last week as permanent staff. I did the A+ exams today so only a few more certs to go to qualify for the job they gave me.

Sorry this is so long ... bottom line ... I was too old and had no related experience ... but I'm getting there. So learn lots, be proud of your gender and age and don't make any enemies ... you never know what friend may recommend you for a job. I know a lot of IT employers look for younger people but I think that's mostly because their education is up to date. Experience? ... work anywhere you can. At least it proves you can show up for work.
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net_grl
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« Reply #27 on: May 23, 2003, 09:48:24 PM »

HI!
I am new here. I accidentaly fell into IT field. I am now about 2 years into it.
As for women in the industry...personal experience... I have found I do have to work harder to prove myself, even with certifications, and have been known to create a competitive atmosphere between myself (the only woman in the dept) and the males. But once I started landing my certs..others followed..men are naturally competitive. I took a beating at first...and now I have earned my place, but...I had to work harder to get where I am (with certs)...The ride has just begun...this just might be fun!
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dianeteg
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« Reply #28 on: May 25, 2003, 03:02:54 PM »

ironbelle,

I am also attempting to change careers.  
As you already know, it is especially difficult in this economy to obtain entry level IT experience.  I lost a job in state government about 9 months ago and have been working multiple part-time jobs since then.  One of my part-time jobs is a semi-technical job at a community college.  The pay is worthless.  My other jobs pay more than twice as much, but do not have technical responsibilities.  I'm keeping the low-paying technical job because I know I need the experience to get a full-time IT job down the road.  

Now is not a good time to enter the IT field, but it's not a good time to enter any field.  I'm going to keep my bottom of the barrel technical job and keep working on various certifications so I'll be ready when things pick up again in the future.  

Good luck with your career change.
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sayble96
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« Reply #29 on: May 27, 2003, 02:45:38 PM »

I am also attempting a career change. I was in long term care for 17 years and in the position I was in I could go no further. Not to mention I hated my job and had no goals for my future.

Knowing what I do about computers I was dubbed the "computer person" at work. So on top of my other duties I was also responsible for the computer issues at work, which included training staff, troubleshooting problems, updating the software, maintaining the network and stuff like that. Anyway, it came to a point where I would hope the computers went down so I could work on them. I decdided it was time for a change. I quit my full-time job and went back to school full-time. It's the best decision I've ever made. I just completed my first semester of school. I am working towards earning my degree as a "Computer Network Specialist".

My classes ranged from 25-30 students and I was one of 3 women. I was intimidated at first, but I'm not anymore. I think it's great that more women are entering the IT field. It's a great field with endless learning opportunities and I can't wait to graduate and get out there in the work force doing what I love to do.
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