Tech Womaniya – is a community of women aiming to strengthen and empower women in science, technology, mathematics, and engineering (STEM).
International data during the past decade suggest that the number of women in most areas of science and engineering has continued to grow by leaps and bounds. Quantitative surveys however indicate persistence of gender-gaps, in terms of opportunities, salaries and career advancements and this remains a challenge that needs to be addressed .
In India, despite the increasing number of women in higher education in science, women’s participation at higher levels of science in tenured research positions has shown little increase. Women constitute over one-third of the total science graduate and post-graduate degree holders, but comprise only 15-20% of the tenured faculty across research institutions and universities in India,(INSA Report, 2004).Science career begins at the early stage soon after PhD and it is important for women to establish themselves during their early 30s. But this period coincides for most Indian women with marriage and family commitments. Breaks or temporary research positions of 3-5 years during this period do not provide the advantage of moving up the ladder at a later stage when family commitments take less time. Thus, as a compromise, a large number of qualified women scientists opt for undergraduate or school level teaching assignments, while others completely drop out of science.
In unity there is strength
For over a century, women’s organizations—whether informal or well established; whether local, regional, national, or international—have played a valuable role in raising women scientists’ and engineers’ profiles. At Tech Womaniya, we are getting to know each other, exchanging experiences, learning and supporting each other. We collate resources such as mentoring schemes, management training, and technical presentations. In addition, our volunteers regularly visit local schools to offer advice for aspiring science and engineering students and to help provide role models.