#ILookLikeAnEngineer is a Big, Brave Challenge to Tech Industry Stereotypes
When one woman was told she “didn’t look like an engineer,” she started a hashtag which began a storm.
Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs, and tens of thousands of Silicon Valley guys coming to work in “cool sneakers” every day. For a long time, the tech industry appears to have been dominated by white men, and people are starting to speak up. Just recently, Isis Wenger, a female engineer, was put in an advertising campaign about tech—only to receive thousands of (direct and indirect) comments, telling her she didn’t “look like an engineer.” So Wenger started the hashtag #ILookLikeAnEngineer, and thousands of people—many of them women, people of color, and LGBT—spoke up, in tens of thousands of tweets.
Wenger told The Washington Post, “I think the message went viral because it’s not just my message. It addresses a problem that many people of different genders and ethnic backgrounds face … Especially when I was first starting out in the industry, people were very condescending … There’s no way I could have really been an engineer right? They had pretty low expectations of me.”
Only 26 percent of computer jobs are held by women. Only 17 percent of Google’s tech jobs are performed by women. At Twitter, the number is ten percent. The demographic divide in the industry is real, but that doesn’t mean that interest in the field is monolithic. What, exactly, does an engineer look like? Let the internet explain.
A photo posted by Jeania Pang (@missinstapang) on
(Via: The Washington Post)