Technology is one of Salford’s most important industries – yet far too few female students are choosing to go into it.
That’s why Salford City Council has become the first local authority in England to back Tech She Can to start a female tech revolution.
This national initiative set up by PwC UK and 17 other founding organisations, aims to help increase the number of women working in technology by inspiring and educating young girls and women to get into tech careers.
As part of the campaign, Salford schools will be encouraged to boost girls’ interest and participation in technology, through free access to educational resources and toolkits that can be used by both boys and girls, in the classroom or at home.
The Tech We Can lessons are designed around children’s interests, looking at areas such as tech for sports, travel, the environment and space and helping them to see the possibilities of a career in technology.
Deputy City Mayor Councillor John Merry said the council, which has won national awards for being a digital leader, decided to act after shocking national research by PwC, the company behind the campaign.
“Their research with over 2,000 A-Level and university students shows that the gender gap in technology starts at school and carries on through every stage of girls’ and women’s lives,” he said.
“While 61% of male students would consider a career in technology, only 27% of female students would – and only three per cent of them say it would be their first choice. They don’t know what options are available, they don’t see female role models and they see the industry as too male dominated.
“That’s a shocking waste of women’s skills and talent, particularly when the pandemic has shown how important and useful technology is.
"As a city which is working hard to help people to use IT and boost their digital skills and confidence, which is promoting apprenticeships and initiatives to support young people into training and employment, we saw this as a natural extension of that work.”
Supporting this charter builds on the council’s aim to become a digital city, an ambition which forms part of its wider vision for a more inclusive Salford, where everyone can reach their full potential. This commitment to Tech She Can will help ensure that Salford girls and women have the best chance of getting on in tech.