Technology and Target: Helping Break Barriers for Young Women in Science

October 11, 2012 - Article reads in
Beth Jacob smiles with students on Target's first Science and Technology Day

Right now, you’re reading this on the Internet. And chances are, you’re female. How do we know? (No, we’re not psychic.) We just know that females use the Internet 17 percent more than their male counterparts, and are the fastest growing demographic online*.

Despite that, only 14 percent of engineers are female, according to a 2011 report by the U.S. Department of Commerce. The numbers don’t lie—women in science, technology, engineering and math are highly underrepresented.

So how do we get more women involved? More universities, companies and industries have to commit to inspire, recruit and empower more women in these fields.

That’s why Target Women in Science and Technology (TWIST) recently hosted the group’s first-ever Science and Technology Day at Target’s Minneapolis headquarters, where about 125 high school girls were shown practical examples of how science and technology knowledge is applied throughout the entire company–from logistics to life-sized telepresence teleconferencing.

Local students were treated to motivating classes and conversation with Beth Jacob. “There’s no better time to be in technology,” said Target’s Chief Information Officer. “I encourage you to pursue your passion.”

“When you go to Target and you see all the pretty glasses lined up on a shelf, you don’t see all the work and technology behind getting those glasses there,” said Jamie Thimmesch Rachie, a senior at Eden Prairie High School who attended the event.

Retail can be a pretty techy business after all, with unexpected opportunities from product design and textile engineering to food science.

“Today was a really unique opportunity to see fields they could go into using science and technology,” said Deanna Blane, a teacher at Burnsville High School. “This kind of thing really helps open their eyes to those opportunities.

Check out photos of the event below!

*Source: The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project


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