CBA and Telstra banking on next generation of girls in tech

Commonwealth Bank and Telstra are today hosting the annual ‘Girls in Tech’ event; a live and virtual experience that sees female high school students from across the country learn about the latest in artificial intelligence, robotics and data science, as well as hear from female pioneers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM).

Held at CBA’s head office, the Foundry, located in Sydney’s technology precinct, the event aims to engage and inspire a new generation of girls and help them to understand the incredible array of careers that are open to everyone in STEM fields.

With 75 per cent of future jobs requiring STEM skills1, and women representing just 21 per cent of those Australians with STEM qualifications2, this year’s event is designed to educate young women on the benefits of furthering their education in the STEM fields.

Jane Adams, Executive General Manager, HR Commonwealth Bank said: “There is no doubt that technology is constantly evolving and STEM skills will be vital in our tech-driven future workforce,” she said.

“We also know that our youth show interest in STEM subjects at a relatively early age, so it is crucial we educate and inspire young women to explore these essential skills early on. Our goal is for female students to expand their knowledge of skills, be galvanised by possible career pathways, and believe in themselves. We want them to come away saying ‘I can do that’, or ‘I want to do that’, knowing that any of these careers are in reach for them.

“Experiences such as this don’t just have an impact on an individual, they impact entire communities.”

The Girls in Tech program was first launched in 2019 to help expand the knowledge, skills and career options for female high school students, with a focus on inviting schools from lower socio-economic areas.

This year marks the biggest version of the event to date, with more schools invited to interact with exhibition booths hosted by the likes of Telstra, Google and CSIRO, to see the latest and emerging trends in technology.

In addition, attendees will be given the chance to hear from professionals and pioneering women in STEM; including, but not limited to, Women’s Advocate and former teacher, Wendy McCarthy; CEO and Founder of Lumachain, Jamila Gordon; and Visual Science Communicator, Dr Kate Patterson.

Speaking about the event, Telstra HR Executive, Rebecca Holden, said the company was proud to be able to help educate young women about the exciting career opportunities that exist in the world of tech and, therefore, the importance of having STEM qualifications.

“It’s so important for young women to feel empowered to design the world they want to live in and pursue education opportunities that will help make this a reality. We want to make technology accessible and inspire these young women to return to their schools and consider STEM subjects for their future career paths. It’s an investment in Australia’s digital future and one way we hope to build a bigger and more diverse pipeline of technology talent.”

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