In a bid to boost the number of women working in the technology sector, Facebook and LinkedIn have teamed up to induce more college going girls to study engineering and computer science. Looking to the dwindling numbers of women opting to study technology and engineering, they want to introduce mentoring and training programs for women at college level in the US so that these women will be qualified to eventually fill thousands of new jobs in the Silicon Valley, which has been dominated by men since long.
In an interview given to the Associated press, Facebook’s COO Sheryl Sandberg and LinkedIn’s CEO Jeffrey Weiner announced that together, both the companies will be launching mentoring sessions as well as training and other support programs in colleges so that more women get involved in studying technology.
Currently in Facebook, 31% of total employees and 15% of those employed in tech jobs are women. In LinkedIn, women make up 39% of the company’s total work force and 17% of the total tech employees. The situation is somewhat similar in most of the other Silicon Valley companies.
“A lot of our consumers, at least half, sometimes more, are women. We build a product that gives people a voice. We know we can’t build a product for the world unless our teams reflect the diversity of the people who use the product,” said Sandberg.”But the talent pool is shrinking: The percentage of people enrolled in undergraduate computer science programs who are women peaked at 35 percent in 1985 and is now down to about 17 percent.”
Weiner too said that LinkedIn needed gender equity to serve the users in a better way. “To limit the perspective of the people building our product and services, if that’s too narrow, it’s going to lead to suboptimal outcomes,” he said.
Facebook and LinkedIn have not disclosed how much they were going to spend on this initiative but they have said that the investment focuses on peer groups and mentoring. The mentoring sessions have already been established through Lean In Circles which offer women inspiration and support to help them to pursue their ambitions.
Source Huffington Post