ChickTech is dedicated to retaining women in the technology workforce and increasing the number of women and girls pursuing technology-based careers.
ChickTech provides equal volunteer and employment opportunities to all employees and applicants without regard to race, color, religious creed, sex, national origin, ancestry, citizenship status, pregnancy, childbirth, physical disability, mental disability, age, military status or status as a Vietnam-era or special disabled veteran, marital status, registered domestic partner or civil union status, gender (including sex stereotyping and gender identity or expression), medical condition (including, but not limited to, cancer related or HIV/AIDS related) or sexual orientation in accordance with applicable federal, state and local law. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including, but not limited to hiring, placement, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.
ChickTech Career is for women of all ages (and careers!). We believe our events will help to keep women engaged if they are already in high tech, give them confidence if they were thinking about going into high tech, and help them to create a great network of intelligent, amazing women just like themselves. The events range from networking to hands-on workshops, with most of our events falling in the latter category. Learn more on our MeetUp page.
These career events can be anything our chapter and our community wants. Sample events in other chapters have included an event on executive leadership, a panel on imposter syndrome and a robotics building workshop.
Although ChickTech focuses on anyone who identifies as a woman/girl for these events and our goal is to empower women/girls, we also welcome those who identify as men as participants. Any person may be asked to not participate and/or leave if they are being disruptive or creating an unwelcome environment for others.
It’s about building community. Women cite isolation as a main cause of leaving tech. There is nothing wrong with having a lot of events to go to hosted by lots of groups. We’re all in this together and creating one more resource, no matter if it’s different, is helping not hurting. Every organization has a different vibe so some will naturally be drawn to us over another and vice versa. We are not about competition, we are about collaboration.
ChickTech High School revolves around creating events that will get high schoolers interested and excited about technology. These events pose some interesting challenges, as we expect that most of our participants have never had a chance to do anything like what we are offering. Our goal is to reach the girls who would make great engineers, but because of stereotypes and a lack of opportunity, may not realize it until they are already doing something else, if at all. We also strive to show the relevance of each workshop to their lives–and help them to understand that they have the ability to use tech to transform their world!
For our K-12 programs, any child who identifies as a girl is welcome to participate. However, at partner events, this policy may vary. For example, a library may ask that all children be allowed to participate. The benefit of an all-girl experience is supported by a significant body of research. See below for excerpts from other well-established girl-oriented organizations regarding this topic.
As stated by Girl Scouts of the U.S.A., “an organization whose sole purpose is to meet the unique needs of girls is not discriminatory. In conferring a Congressional Charter upon Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. in 1950, the Congress of the United States explicitly stated that the youth membership was for girls. When the Congress enacted Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 to prohibit Federal financial assistance to educational organizations which discriminate on the basis of sex, it expressly recognized an exception for the Boy Scouts and the Girl Scouts and other voluntary youth organizations, ‘membership of which has traditionally been limited to persons of one sex and principally to persons of less than nineteen years of age‘.“
The philosophy of Girls Inc. programming directs that our approach be compensatory for girls as well as intentional. As put forth in the statement of philosophy, we live in an inequitable society in which gender discrimination and numerous social, legal and cultural barriers limit girls’ opportunities and potential… Thus, Girls Inc. programming is designed to compensate for both the overt (obvious) and covert (hidden) gender discrimination girls and women encounter, enabling girls to overcome barriers to reaching their full potential.