March is Women’s History Month and I wanted to highlight some magical women’s groups collaborating around Portland area. These amazing women’s groups are leading the way for women of all ages to encourage communication about women in the tech world, mentoring young women who are interested in technology, and improving women’s lives through storytelling.
The first group, PDX Women in Tech celebrates professional women in the Portland-metro area who work with, manage, lead or have an interest in technology.
Once a month, PDXWIT organizes a happy hour networking meetup that is hosted by a Portland tech company. This month’s happy hour is hosted at Treehouse, with past happy hours appearing at WeWork, New Relic, eBay, and other popular tech companies. These happy hours are an excellent way for women to meet other women in tech and find out what other companies are doing, who they are hiring for, what projects they are working on, and not feel so alone. It’s groups like PDXWIT that working on changing stats such as the recent Willamette Weekly posted. The Willamette Weekly reported that Portland was the WORST place in the US for women in tech. Us ladies gotta stick together and help change the future outlook.
The second group, Chicks Tech is an nation-wide organization that focuses on retaining women in the technology workforce and increasing the number of women and girls pursuing technology-based careers.
The Portland chapter is very active, one of the programs I’m excited about ChickTech: High School. It’s a program that demostrates to high school girls that engineering can be fun and exciting! Chicks Tech engages teenagers through these hands-on workshops that are project based to help build confidence and excitement. To continue the learning, ChicksTech provides follow-up workshops throughout the year. These workshops include robotics, web programming, gaming and building computers and the programs are FREE to the students.
Chicks Tech is also behind workshops for women professonials covering topics such as the Imposter Syndrome and Negotiation. ChicksTech also plays a large part in the ACT-W conference(URL), designed to help women network, enhance skills, and connect with companies looking for talent. It’s a great opportunity to meet mentors, build tech and social skills, meet leaders, and much more.
The third group is Women’s Foundation of Oregon. Their vision is an Oregon where every woman and girl can thrive. WFO’s mission is to focus the power of women’s collective resources to improve the lives of women and girls throughout Oregon.
#Listentoher Campaign: Have you heard about this month’s project? It’s called “Listen to Her Oregon” Taking a van, WFO is stopping at 12 different locations around the state of Oregon. At every stop, they are hosting an intertactive town hall meeting, speaking to women and girls. These voices will be captured for the Report on the status of Oregon’s women and girls and will be shared with decision makers throughout the state. The topics ranges from family to career, every story matters!
WFO also encourages and promotes other organizes such as Dress for Success, RoseCity Rollers, Women in Trade, and many other Oregon women-focused groups.
Blue Deer Forest supports and work with many business and organizations that are lead and managed by women. Do you know of other women’s organizations or gathering that support community around women in tech? Please let us know, we’d love to learn and share events and meetups around them!