Just in case you are wondering who Ada Lovelance is, she was an early scientist who worked on a flying machine and worked with Charles Babbage on a mechanical general-purpose computer & the Analytical Engine. Today is a day set aside to recognise her contribution to the IT sector as well as that by ‘Women in IT’.
Today Outbox and Thought Works put up an event to recognise the role of Women in IT and celebrate the life of Ada Lovelance. The meet up was rather casual but informative. Viviana Terceros talked about life as a developer and why she took on software development as a career. She told us how IT has made her grow in all ways; career-wise and emotionally.
Edith Namuganga told her story of how she studied in a male dominated class, Telecom Engineering to be precise and how she joined Thought Works to venture into something she wanted as Business analyst and writer. She also says that Parents need to find out wether girls like technology before the make girls venture into code or IT.
We also had a talk demo about Clojure, a presentation about how to use code to write musical notes. I must say using Java to write code was quite amazing.
Dr. Dorothy Okello shared her role in IT, she did engineering an runs a program to attract girls to keep in engineering, she worries that now that there are many Women in IT, they might join up and start saying that they are in a wrong place because during her time Being a female in IT was about proving a point and that encouraged them.
“There are Many Women in IT, and different challenges they face so don’t expect me to know all the problems of all women in IT, because different people have different challenges” – Dr. Dorothy Okello
Dr. Dorothy added that the biggest challenge is that much as more women are joining IT, more women are leaving IT and the biggest struggle should actually be keeping them there starting from secondary school level.
Another issue is the time women in IT need because the sector requires alot of time, “we are going to a time where women are going to delay to get married anf get children and we might even have to force the government to pay us to have babies” Dr. Dorothy added.
An issue of negative mind set of children in schools was addressed and a there is need for parents to also get involved because they sometimes discourage girls from IT or engineering so they need to have a more liberal mind about the idea.
We also had a session about the Imposter syndrome. The imposter syndrome is about a negative feeling about your success, something that makes us suffer from selfdenial or luck of self esteem and feeling a fraud/fake. Imposter syndrome is affecting many women. We watched a video on the Imposter Syndrome, feel free to watch it below.
Such events in Uganda are necessary for the development of IT fraternity in Africa