International Women’s Day, celebrated on March 8th, is an important time to reflect and acknowledge the achievements made by women and the progress still ahead. This year’s theme – Choose to Challenge — invites a challenge to the status quo. McMaster University will no doubt mark this milestone in a number of ways. For McMaster IT, we are fortunate to have women tech leaders choosing to leverage delightful technology to help, enable and enhance our campus.
During the recent all-virtual Connectivity 2021, McMaster’s IT Forum, AVP & CTO Gayleen Gray and Gartner’s Debra Christmas moderated the McMaster Women in Tech Panel, featuring past Changemakers Nevine Chawra, Jodie Lobana and Hanna Haponenko. The Panel helped conclude the year-long McMaster Women in Tech Changemaker project — a series that highlights and recognizes women tech changemakers within the McMaster community.
The Panel discussed key topics facing women in the tech landscape, such as the hurdles they face, how to encourage more women to join tech and advice for women seeking to build a career working with or in tech. Watch this full discussion.
“It’s been an absolute pleasure as we’ve gone through this year talking to so many women. Everything we’ve heard from these women is like a little playbook of how we need to support other women and continue to move this forward,” says Gray.
The initiative could not have been what it is without the support of so many on campus. The Office of the AVP & Equity and Inclusion was a key ally in developing the project. And there are so many others, such as the selecting committee members, all nominees and individuals who nominated their women tech colleagues.
Community feedback for the series has been nothing but encouraging, uplifting and supportive. In celebration of International Women’s day and McMaster’s women IT professionals, the Office of the AVP & CTO will continue the McMaster Women in Tech series on an annual basis and announce selected Changemakers alongside the McMaster IT Forum. Moving forward, the series will focus on building partnerships and elevating equity-focused groups within the McMaster community — with that same goal of lifting women up to share their stories and inspire others.