The Treat Family Women in IT Scholarship
Shellie Treat is the Assistant Director of Network Services here at UIS. She oversees the System Support team who is in charge of Active Directory, Exchange, Physical and Virtual Servers, SAN Storage, etc..
She began working in Information Technology (IT) when she was only 16. She says that in all her positions and ventures within IT there haven’t been many women working alongside her. “When you meet people at other I.T. events,” she says, “they assume that you are just tagging along with your husband and not actually in the field.”
To provide some encouragement and assist with trying to close that gap and stereotype, she and her husband, Tyler, have created a scholarship for women majoring in computer science who are interested in the IT field. They are hoping that others will work with them to increase the size of the scholarship.
Many Benefits of More Women in IT
This is not just an issue of gender equity. According to the National Center for Women & Information Technology, more women in Information Technology produce many benefits for companies, for our country, and for society.
The following paragraphs are from the NCW&IT website (link above):
“The lack of girls and women in computing and technology represents a failure to capitalize on the benefits of diverse perspectives: in a world dependent on innovation, it can bring the best and broadest problem-solvers to the table; and at a time when technology drives economic growth, it can yield a larger and more competitive workforce.
- The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that IT will be one of the fastest-growing sectors of the U.S. economy, adding nearly 1.4 million job openings by 2020. Over two-thirds of these jobs could go unfilled due to the insufficient pool of college graduates with computing-related degrees. Women represent a vastly untapped talent pool.
- Groups with greater diversity solve complex problems better and faster than do homogenous groups, and the presence of women in a group is more likely to increase the collective intelligence (problem-solving ability, creativity) of the group.
- Companies with the highest representation of women in their management teams have a 34% higher return on investment than did those with few or no women.” (Emphasis added.)
Add to the Treat Family Scholarship!
You can join Shellie and Tyler it encouraging and supporting more women in the Information Technology field. Make a gift using the Donate button below or by one of the other means available to you.
A push toward more computer science education: A news article published in USA Today.