A recent study conducted by No Fluff Jobs provides an overview of how girls and women engage with STEM fields at different stages of their lives. Let’s dive into the data and explore what it reveals about the dynamics of women’s involvement in IT sector in Poland.

The study highlights a crucial window at ages 11-12 when girls begin to show significant interest in STEM. This early enthusiasm, however, faces a sharp decline by the time they reach 15-16 years old. Understanding what factors contribute to this drop is vital for developing strategies to maintain their interest.

The college years (20-24) prove to be a critical period for many women, with 27.1% discovering a passion for tech during this time. Interestingly, the engagement doesn’t stop there; 21% of women find their way into tech between the ages of 25-29. This indicates a continued openness to technology careers well into early adulthood.

Notably, 42% of female IT specialists didn’t start in tech. Instead, they transitioned from other fields, showcasing the diverse entry points into the industry. This diversity of backgrounds enriches the tech landscape, bringing varied perspectives and solutions to the table.

Encouragement from friends and partners plays a significant role, with 23.1% and 21.9% of women, respectively, citing this as a key factor in their pursuit of a tech career. Yet, a striking 38.2% reported receiving no encouragement to explore IT, underscoring the need for more supportive networks and mentoring opportunities.

Despite 60% of women in IT not experiencing discouragement directly, gender stereotypes continue to pose a barrier, painting technology as a „man’s world.” Such perceptions can significantly deter interest and impact self-esteem, highlighting the importance of challenging these outdated views.

In terms of compensation, while 34% of women in IT believe they earn less than their male counterparts for similar work, 40.7% report earning the same, and 5% feel they earn more.

This data not only celebrates the achievements and resilience of women in tech but also calls for action. It emphasizes the importance of early engagement in STEM, robust support systems and overcoming stereotypes.