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Let’s talk about why we need more women in STEM

Let’s talk about why we need more women in STEM

The Director-General of the Government Communications Bureau (GSCB) wants to talk about why New Zealand needs more women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) related roles.

“The GCSB contributes to the protection of New Zealand’s national security, the international relations and the well-being of New Zealand, and our country’s economic well-being,” Mr Hampton said.

“In a technology driven world, with all the opportunities and threats that brings, the GCSB needs the best and brightest STEM minds working for us.

“To achieve our mission we need to be driving innovation and making the best decision possible; to do this we need the different perspectives that come from a diverse and dynamic workforce.”

Tertiary Education Commission figures show women account for only around a third of all students working towards a STEM-related tertiary qualification. Within that group of women the vast major identify as European, with around 14 percent identify as Maori or Pasifika.

“In the GCSB, women are well represented at the senior management level (60 percent), and we have halved our gender pay gap in two years. However, women only make up only 36 percent of our overall workforce but occupy less than 20 percent of our STEM-related roles,” Mr Hampton said.

“We are committed to changing this. For the second year the GCSB will be offering tertiary scholarships to women studying STEM subjects at New Zealand tertiary institutions.

“The 2017 scholarship programme attracted such an exceptionally high level of applications that it was a no brainer to run it again.

“This year we are intending to award three $10,000 scholarships, one of which will be reserved for a suitable Maori or Pasifika candidate.

“While recipients are not obliged to work for GCSB in the future, it is my hope that the scholarships help to raise awareness of the awesome STEM-related career paths available to women in GCSB such as engineering, computer science and technical analysis.”

Applications for the 2018 scholarships open today. Further information about the scholarships, including how to apply, can be found here.

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