July 26, 2012
Being a woman in technology has its challenges, but feeling alone shouldn’t be one of them. Whether you’re a girl, a woman, or a grrl, the 20 organizations below can help you get connected with other entrepreneurs, designers, and developers; get help with coding, marketing, and fundraising; or just get inspired. And these are only the tip of the iceberg, with tons of local clubs, meetups, and organizations cheering on lady technologists.
- Astia: A not-for-profit organization that offers paid, week-long programs to help female entrepreneurs in technology, life sciences, and clean tech to learn skills for revenue generation, sales, and fundraising. Includes a support network of over 200 investors and 300 startup executives.
- Girl Develop It: Technical workshops for female programmers held around the United States, as well as in Canada and Australia. They aim to create a supportive environment where women can join the discussion and show off their skills. Courses are also available online.
- Hackbright Academy: A 10-week training program for women in San Francisco – half learning, half doing. Applications for the fall program are due in August, and it costs $6,000.
- Skillcrush: A site targeted at women to help them learn technology, including tech terms, Ask Ada (named after the first programmer), and other articles.
- Bad Girl Ventures (Ohio): A microlending organization started by Candace Klein that helps women-owned startups in Ohio. Borrowers also get a nine-week course on business development.
- C.W. Developers (Chicago): Classes and events in Chicago for female programmers. They are in the middle of their Summer Apps Program, a series of three courses to transform your idea into a web and mobile app. They also host weekly open hack nights on Thursday (#XXHACK), where anyone can show up and get help on coding.
- DC Web Women (Washington, DC): A 3,000+ member organization of women in web design and development, IT, and other digital careers (such as blogging and marketing).
- Philly Women in Tech (Philadelphia): A community that connects women in technology fields in Philadelphia to learn from and inspire each other. Host of the 2012 Women in Tech Summit.
- She++ (Stanford): A conference held at Stanford University on the opportunities, challenges, and role models for women in technology, to inspire more “femgineers”: female programmers who use their skills for positive change.
- Web Start Women (Boston): Courses in web design and development for women in Boston. They aim to make coding less intimidating and create a supportive environment.
- Women in Technology (UK): A network of around 7,000 individuals that helps women succeed in technology careers with networking events, job training, and recruitment services.
Media, Events, and Community
- Ada Initiative: A non-profit that helps more women participate in open technology, like open source software and Wikipedia. They hold conferences, do consulting for organizations, and teach workshops.
- Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology: Organizes conferences for women and awards for influential female leaders. Their goal is to not only help women thrive in technology fields, but make sure technologies are built to help women thrive.
- Girl Geek Dinners: A community that holds dinner events for women in STEM and helps them find inspiration and mentorship.
- Girls in Tech: An organization with local chapters around the world that host events. Girls in Tech University brings workshops and resources to female college students pursuing a career in technology, and they also have mentorship programs for grade-school students.
- GirlGeeks: An unassuming online community with articles for women in computing, such as career advice, technology how-to’s, and inspiring stories.
- The RAISE Project: Created by the Society for Women’s Health Research, it helps women find and apply for awards and grants in science, technology, engineering, math, and mathematics.
- She’s Geeky: Organizes events with an “unconference” format – attendees create and vote on topics, like Barcamp for women. (It’s unclear if they have future events planned.)
- Webgrrls: A global organization with local chapter events, discussion boards, and job listings. Organizers of TechSpeak for Entrepreneurs, a two-day conference in New York to teach entrepreneurs to communicate with and manage their technical employees.
- Women 2.0: A media organization highlighting female entrepreneurship. Organizers of Founder Friday meetups and the PITCH conferences in Silicon Valley and New York. Their sister organization in Latin America is Ellas 2.0. See our interview with CEO Shaherose Charania.
- Women in Wireless: An organization that promotes female leaders in mobile and digital through events in DC, New York, and San Francisco and spotlights on influential women.
- Women Who Tech: Organizers of the yearly Women Who Tech TeleSummit, with talks by women in technology, startups, and social media. Creators of the #Women2Follow hashtag on Twitter.
Accelerators and Investors
- Golden Seeds: A firm that invests in early-stage companies with a female founder/CEO or executive. They also offer business training to entrepreneurs and investors.
- NewME Accelerator: A 12-week mentorship program in Mountain View for startups led by a minority founder (African American, Latino, or female).
- Springboard: Their “Forum Program” is an accelerator with two months of coaching for women-led businesses. They also offer pitch practice and educational programs to learn how to fundraise.
- Women Innovate Mobile: A three-month mentorship program in New York City for mobile-focused startups with at least one female founder. They offer $18,000 in funding in exchange for 6 percent equity.
Professional Organizations and Alliances
- National Center for Women & Information Technology: A non-profit coalition of corporations, schools, government agencies, and non-profits working together to help more women succeed in IT. Their work includes awards, programs for students, and seed funding.
- Women In Technology International: A network of women working in technology fields who provide support to each other through networking meetups, career services, events, and other offerings.
- Women in Technology: A not-for-profit organization that aims to help women advance in technology fields. They provide education in technology and leadership, networking events, mentoring, and awards.
- Black Girls Code: An organization that helps African-American girls ages 7-17 learn programming and take charge of their future, mainly through workshops across the country.
- CodeEd: A program that teaches computer science to girls in underserved communities, starting in middle school. They run classes in Boston, New York, and San Francisco.
- Girls Who Code: An 8-week summer class teaching programming to high school girls in New York City. The girls take trips to Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare and work on a final project that tackles a challenge in their community, like recycling.
- Tech Girlz: A non-profit that hopes to inspire and educate young girls to pursue careers in technology, through events, classes, and interviews.
- Technovation Challenge: A program where high school girls create a prototype for an Android app, write a business plan, and pitch to VCs, while being mentored by women in tech. Created by Iridescent Learning.
Do you run an organization for women in technology? Send an email to [email protected] and we could add you to the list.
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