Dublin Villager

New club aims to interest girls in science, math, tech fields

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Girls tend to shy away from science, technology, engineering and math, but a new Dublin club is aiming to change that.

CoolTechGirls, an initiative for girls in grades 6-12 started by Dublin, the Dublin Entrepreneurial Center and Cybervation, will kick off Saturday, May 18.

Purba Majumder, president of Cybervation, has an office at the DEC and said she wanted to start the group after years in the tech field with few female colleagues.

"There is a tremendous disconnect. Girls don't really know what they want to do and the opportunities available to them," Majumder said.

"My company is a software company and I've been on the tech scene for a long time," she said.

"I've been in the tech field since 1995 and I feel like there's not enough women in the field.

"There are so many jobs we cannot fill because there are not enough graduates coming out."

With two daughters, ages 10 and 14, Majumder said she's seen a lack of interest in the STEM subjects.

One daughter even said she stayed away from the subjects because she didn't want to be labeled a nerd.

Majumder is hoping CoolTechGirls will change that.

"There are jobs in IT," she said.

"There are jobs in technology fields.

"We should be preparing for those jobs right now and there are not enough girls," Majumder said.

The first CoolTechGirls event will run from 3-5 p.m. Saturday at the DEC, 565 Metro Place South, and show teens what women have done in STEM fields.

Women set for the kickoff include Karen McVey, president of Clearview Management Resources; Ingrid Fields, president of Tempest Networking; Susan Watson, director of enterprise customer data at Cardinal Health; and Dr. Sarmila Majumder, research assistant professor in the department of molecular and cellular biochemistry at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

Majumder will also speak about her career in the tech field and Coffman High School student Megan Holstein will talk about her experience making applications for iPod and iPad.

At the initial meeting, interests of the members will be gathered so programming set to begin in the fall will be tapered to their needs.

"We'll collect information about their interests during the kickoff so we can organize according to their interests this fall," Majumder said, adding field trips might soon be on the agenda.

Saturday's kickoff will also include refreshments and hands-on activities.

To RSVP for the free event, email info@cooltechgirls.org or call 614-410-4949.

For more information on the new club, look online at cooltechgirls.org.

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