Promoting Careers in Technology Is Microsoft’s Target for Take Our Daughters to Work Day

REDMOND, Wash., April 26, 2001 — According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the five fastest growing occupations through 2008 will be in information technology.

To help prepare for that demand, over 300 girls are joining their Microsoft parents or mentors today to participate in Microsofts ninth annual Take Our Daughters to Work Day at the company’s main corporate campus in Redmond.

A full day of programs, tours and activities centered on fostering an interest in technology are available for participants, including demonstrations on emerging technologies such as eBooks and Web design; hands-on classes in writing for and developing Web sites, conducting product and marketing research, and testing for bugs in software; interactive tours of the Microsoft Studios, MSNBC Studios, Microsofts Usability Labs and Data Center; the
“Car of Tomorrow”
(with hands-free, voice-activation services); and the interactive Microsoft Home. The program begins with a keynote presentation by Deborah Black, Microsoft vice president for Windows Management, Supportability, and Online Services.

The event is hosted by Microsoft Hoppers, an employee resource group named in honor Admiral Grace Hopper, a pioneering U.S. computer scientist. Founded in 1990, Hoppers works to attract, develop and keep great women at Microsoft by promoting solutions for issues that affect women in business. Activities include a support forum, programs that encourage women’s technical and career development, educational activities and scholarship opportunities for young women in the community. Female employees throughout Microsoft use Hoppers as an empowerment tool — networking, participating in mentor programs, sharing job concerns and experiences, learning how to balance work and family, and helping to advance their careers.

Girls consistently rate themselves lower than boys on computer ability and have less positive attitudes toward computers (American Institutes for Research,
“Gender Gaps: Where Schools Still Fail Our Children,”
1998), and women earn only 18 percent of doctorates in computer science in the United States (The New York Times, September 1999). During the events of Take Our Daughters to Work Day, Microsoft parents and mentors, as well as Microsoft staffers, can demonstrate the rewarding — and fun — opportunities a career in technology can provide young women.

The event is part of Microsoft’s ongoing commitment to promoting a diverse workforce in scientific and technical fields. The company believes that diversity enriches its products and performance, as well as the communities in which people live and work. In recent years, Microsoft has invested more than $80 million to help stimulate interest among ethnic minorities and women in scientific and technical fields.

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