Earlier this year, Google was offering vouchers for women and minorities for free classes of coding. More specifically, Google was paying for a three months course for anyone from these categories interested in extending their skills. The classes were offered on a First Come First Served basis and they ran out immediately .
Google is trying to contribute at closing the tech gender gap (as on their own premises, women make up for only 17% of their tech employees). They’re not the only ones. Communities like Stackoverflow or Code Academy are offering coding classes free of charge and many start-ups and social enterprises started doing the same. When will we harvest the results? It’s hard to say. In the US girls still make up for just 12% of the IT students and a study carried out last year showed that massive open online courses (Moocs) students are mainly men, white and college educated. In this context, this October’s Code Week (an initiative of the European Commission) might raise some awareness and help girls enter this all-boys world.
However we need more from the European Commission and from programmes like Erasmus+ so that this is more than just a tech fairy tale.
Happy Coding, Everyone!