With this website launch, I feel like we’re officially bringing The Chic Geek into the world and I want to share a little story about where it came from.
When I graduated, I knew exactly where I wanted to be. I wanted to work for a hi-tech startup because I loved the energy (there’s a lot of it) and the people (highly intelligent). I was – and still am – so excited by this industry.
Maybe it’s the type of person I am, or maybe it was my new-grad, starry-eyed glasses, but I desperately wanted to surround myself with people who shared my enthusiasm. People who wanted to explore, develop and learn as much as I did. So I immersed myself in Calgary’s startup community, going to events on a weekly basis, hoping to find something special in the existing community, but I just didn’t have any luck.
There were hardly any young women at these events that I could relate to. In fact, there were hardly any women at all. So I did some digging. Women in tech startups are about as rare as seeing a spirit bear. I learned that women represent a mere 25% of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) workforce – a number that hasn’t changed in over 10 years. That’s staggering considering that the number of women in university is beginning to surpass the number of men. The female presence in fields like computer science, information technology and mathematics is decreasing. Only 5% of tech startups are owned by women and there’s an even smaller percentage of women Venture Capitalists (VCs). I realized that thing I was searching for, that group of like-minded people to learn and grow and share with, just might not exist in Calgary. And that made me really sad. It was even more disheartening to realize that the lack of women in the tech industry is an issue prevalent across the country.
So I dug my feet in. Since I couldn’t find the community I was looking for, I was going to create it. The Chic Geek was born!
And that’s the beginning of The Chic Geek story. I can’t wait to see how the rest unfolds with all of you!