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School Based Initiative - Teen Girls In Technology

8 August 2002

Press Release - New School Based Initiative "Teen Girls in Technology"

Getting more teenage girls aware of and interested in technology-based careers is the aim of a pilot programme to be launched this month in high schools throughout the country.

Presently only 25% of students in computer science are girls and subsequently less than 25% of all workers in the technology sector are women. Yet technology careers and businesses allow achievement of a balanced business and personal life, an issue of high importance to women, and technology is essential in running a business today.

The programme entitled "Teen Girls in Technology" (TGT) was initiated in the private sector by the private training and network company Women in Business New Zealand Limited (WIBNZ). It has been heavily supported by the award winning on-line magazine nzgirl Ltd (www.nzgirl.co.nz), and funded by grants from Industry New Zealand (New Zealand's economic development agency).

While pleased with the funding from Industry NZ, Jenene Crossan of nzgirl said they were very disappointed at the lack of support from IT based companies in New Zealand. "Not even a loan of a computer for the duration of the programme," she said.

"We at nzgirl are really excited about being involved and see it as our way of giving a bit back and promoting this industry as a great place to work. We love it and want to share it!".

Rebecca Matthews of WBINZ said, "It is our objective with this project to change attitudes to technology and show girls that IT is an exciting and challenging industry. We aim to do this by raising the profile of opportunities available. Further to that, we are showcasing real role models in New Zealand, people to truly inspire our young women that anyone can achieve anything by just doing it."

The programme starts on the 15th of August and will be reaching over 20 schools in less than 15 days. The programme will feature an industry diary-style video presented by Jenene Crossan - the TGT spokesperson - followed by her motivational speech on IT and careers. This will lead into the workshop entitled 'Careers and Your Personality', presented by one of New Zealand's leading trainers in personality-profiling, Allison Mooney. The workshop is designed to aid in uncovering the students' personality strengths, and developing enterprising and innovative behaviour. The entire programme is being run entirely at no cost to schools or students.

For more information please contact: Rebecca Matthews - 0508 480 480 rebecca@womeninbusiness.co.nz


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