Geek Girl Careers (GGC), at its core is a career exploration platform. The organization’s goal is to help young women discover their ideal profession, specifically within the tech industry.
As the world evolves, all of Gen Z will be working in a career that uses technology to some degree. However, students are often unaware of the variety of career choices they have in the tech space and end up choosing a job that aligns with parental and societal expectations.
Although women represent nearly half of the United States workforce, they “are still vastly underrepresented in the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) workforce” (United States Census).
Women have made progress— “from 8% of STEM workers in 1970 to 27% in 2019 – but men still dominate the field.” In 2019, men made up “52% of all U.S. workers but 73% of all STEM workers” (United States Census).
GGC offers guidance and inspiration to millions of girls around the world through their personality assessment and career exploration tools. With the aid of mentors and amazing career resources, young girls have the opportunity to holistically learn about the tech workspace.
After graduating from Syracuse University, with majors in Public Relations and Marketing, Iyer knew she wanted to go down an untraditional path. Rather than pursuing a career in sustainable fashion, Iyer decided to become an entrepreneur who could create a positive social impact through empowering women. This ambition led her to pursue her passion project, Geek Girl Careers, as a full-time role.
How did your mission evolve as you took on the challenge of pursuing GGC full-time?
Our organization’s goal always was and is to empower women and encourage them to be successful. Women, who lack exposure to different career paths, are often funneled into jobs that society decides is the right fit for them. Geek Girl Careers is trying to solve this problem at root and help all girls find careers where they are happy.
When we were trying to figure out our product and how to monetize it, we continuously checked to see how it would align with our mission. Through many iterations, we essentially brought GGC back to where it started with its goals of career exploration and women empowerment.
In what ways do you help women become more aware of tech opportunities?
Our platform has two primary ways of helping women gain exposure to different career paths in tech:
Our personality assessment uses an algorithm that groups different personality types to different career paths. In addition to having the traditional tech options like software engineering or machine learning, we include atypical paths like HR or project management. Through this assessment, students learn more about how their passions align with unique careers in tech.
The second resource we use to help girls learn about a variety of career choices is our career exploration program. In June we are launching this pilot program to help students gain more exposure to different STEM subjects. High school students will have the opportunity to learn about a new aspect of tech every week with different universities. They will learn about how their passions align with a variety of careers they probably didn’t know existed.
What do you recommend for girls to do to uncover their passion when their community doesn’t have the right resources?
If you’re interested in something, always try it out. Take different courses, volunteer with organizations in your community, and ask professionals if you can shadow them. You never know what’s going to stick so don’t knock anything off the table. In high school or college join clubs that may be out of your comfort zone and run for officer positions. Work with different teams and mentors to learn whether or not you enjoy something. No matter where you are, it takes effort to find your passion.
What is some advice you would have given to your past self?
I would tell my past self that the definition of success is different for everyone. Everyone’s journey is unique, so stop comparing your journey to someone else’s. I’ve learned that it is so easy to make surface level judgements. But, the more time you spend thinking of others, the less time you spend moving forward. I would tell myself to be inspired by others and implement their tips into your life. Success is not mutually exclusive, you can be successful together with others. And remember, it is important to push yourself now so you can be more comfortable the next time you do something intimidating.
To learn more about Geek Girl Careers, check out their website and social media below!
If you want to learn about new startups, innovative companies, and resilient entrepreneurs, make sure to check out our social media channels and website! To get involved with our multimedia content platform, or if you have any general questions, feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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