STEMinist Profile: Irish Perez, Co-founder, Lead Online Business Developer


Irish Perez

Co-founder, Lead Online Business Developer




What inspired you to pursue a career in STEM?
Ever since I can remember, I have loved to design and draw anything from the scratch. I even have my own collection of comic books. My passion of designing and writing is always the main factor why I pursue my career online. Whenever people out of nowhere will encourage me or adore me just because of the blog I am writing or some designs that I have been playing, it pushes me further and let me think “Hey! I can do it also and I am good at it!” That magic feeling of satisfaction.

What is the coolest project you have worked on and why?
The coolest project is the startup I co-founded, Nerover. It allows me to use my skills on talking with a large group of people, encouraging, doing sales talk while I can play with the designs of features and interface online. What is more cool is that I don’t only focus on one niche but as a startup I was able to converse with different types of group of people. That teaches me a lot of facts and adaptability techniques.

Role models and heroes:
I found it funny whom I adore: Courage the cowardly dog. Courage is always afraid of everything but in the end he will be the one who will have a solution for any mishaps happening. These always remind me that its okay to be afraid; it’s part of the experience but make sure at the end you have a solution to conquer your fear. ;)

Why do you loving working in STEM?
Why do I love it? Because it is very exciting every day! Every day, it’s a different situation. On a daily basis I get some problems to solve, goals to achieve – it is always different from one another. I mean, compared to an office work where you have to do one work for how many years, working in STEM will not bore you. There’s no dull moment and there’s a lot of things you can learn. It’s like a school every day.

Advice for future STEMinists?
Don’t stop learning and do the things that you love. It may be cliche but it really works. Even when you are working on different things and working the job that you don’t want, there will always be a way to include your craft on it and put your character on it every time.

Favorite website or app:
My favorite website is Udemy, they have a lot of free online courses and inspiring stories that push me as well every day.

Twitter: @irishjoy_s


Businesses need to ‘get with the program’ to get more girls into IT

In technology today, there are a broad spectrum of jobs, from the coder to the business analyst, who are using their analytical and problem-solving skills to solve real business problems. As coding becomes more commoditised, the real value will be in interpreting technology and trends for ordinary people…

[ via Silicon Republic ]

Interview With 2013 L’Oréal Women in Digital Award Winner, Heather Marie

Events such as Glamour and the CFDA’s Dressed to Code and L’Oreal’s Women in Digital program are great examples of highlighting women in the tech community and giving them a platform that can be inspiring for other women — including young girls who may not know what they want to do yet, or may be wondering what it’s like to be a women in a male-dominated industry.

[ via The Huffington Post ]

Hey, lady coders: Ada Developers Academy wants to turn you into an all-star programmer — for free

Ada Developers Academy (Ada) is offering up a free, intensive 24-week class designed to teach women everything from Ruby on Rails to HTML/CSS to JavaScript. Once instruction is completed, students will be placed in a six-month apprenticeship with a local tech company to apply their newly-learned skills.

[ via GeekWire ]

Have your say in Accenture’s primary gender gap research

A crucial element of our initiative is a primary gender gap research project led by Accenture, in collaboration with ourselves and our other partners. Little research is available on the subject in Ireland, so we see this as a golden opportunity to gather some real metrics.

[ via Silicon Republic ]

Where are the women scientists and engineers?

In the six years since the financial crisis, geekiness has become trendy for young men. But still the female geek is nowhere to be seen. Asked to explain why, government says it’s up to industry; industry blames the universities, universities blame schools, schools blame parents and parents, well, they blame the media.

[ via The Guardian ]

STEMinist Profile: Julie Kientz, Assistant Professor – Univ. of Washington


Julie Kientz

Assistant Professor

University of Washington

What inspired you to pursue a career in STEM?
I had wanted to be a veterinarian for as long as I can remember, but while I was in high school and doing a job shadowing project, I fainted while watching a dog undergoing surgery! I realized I probably needed to find a new career path after that. I had been spending a lot of time online and chatting with people on Internet Relay Chat (IRC) and was amazed by how useful the Internet was in connecting me to places and people beyond the small town where I grew up. One of my online friends encouraged me to try out programming, and so I did. It was really fun and I was hooked! After that, I decided to pursue computer science.

What is the coolest project you have worked on and why?
I am definitely really proud of the Baby Steps project I’ve been working on since about 2007. The idea is to help parents of young children track developmental progress in their children from birth through age 5 to help detect things like autism or other developmental delays sooner. The idea is that the information will be stored in a centralized database, so we have been working on ideas to use technology to reach parents no matter how they use technology or what their access to it might be. We’ve been using a software application, a website, Twitter, text messaging, and more to try to reach as many parents as we can! It’s been really rewarding to work on a project that can have the potential to help many different families. Also, now that I have my own daughter, I am finding it fun and really useful to use to track her development.

Role models and heroes:
Growing up, I remember really loving to read about Sally Ride, the first female astronaut. It really made me feel like I could do anything I wanted to, and that there was no job that was beyond reach because of my gender. I’m also a big fan of female computer scientists Ada Lovelace and Grace Hopper and of Harvey Mudd’s current president, Maria Klawe.

Why do you loving working in STEM?
I love the feeling that I can create anything in the digital world and use those abilities to help others. Computer science is not just a bunch of math like a lot of people think, but it’s actually a creative process that requires a lot of different types of thinking. Also, the work I do in human-computer interaction involves both working with people to find out what they need and then developing prototypes of that technology and making those ideas come to life. This makes it both challenging and exciting.

Advice for future STEMinists?
Computers touch almost every aspect of our lives these days, and thus there are a number of opportunities to apply computer science to almost any thing that interests you, whether it’s healthcare, art, science, music, games, movies, or more. By combining your work with the things that interest you most, you can definitely enjoy it a lot more and feel good about it. Also, stick to it, even if it gets hard. There are a number of fun things you can do once you get really good at computing.

Favorite website or app:I really love my Fitbit, which I’ve been using for almost 3 years now. When you spend a lot of time with computers, it’s really easy to spend a lot of time not moving. My Fitbit keeps me accountable for making sure I get enough activity, and it also is fun to go back and look at the data and compete with friends for the highest number of steps.

Twitter: @juliekientz


That’s It — I’m Finished Defending Sexism In Tech

I wasn’t seeing the problems clearly because I’d been part of the industry for too long. I also wanted to focus on getting things done rather than on feminist-inspired activism. So I made the bros-only atmosphere work for me. I overcompensated by picking a frat boy to cofound a company with me (he was MIT & YC, by the way). I had the greatest time drinking scotch at Google I/O with some of the best CTOs in the media industry. They treated me like a bro. I didn’t want to lose those moments. And I thought that there was room for other women to have a similarly good experience.

[ via Business Insider ]

Intel’s Diane Bryant on getting women into the tech pipeline

It’s one thing if you say the population is small but it’s growing and you see a future with a lot more women in technology. But it’s frightening that women aren’t getting in the game. Women aren’t seeing this as an opportunistic and highly rewarding career path. That for me is the big power statement.

[ via Silicon Valley Business Journal ]

An App For Kids, By A Kid: Meet The 9-Year-Old Co-Creator Of ‘Super Fun Kid Time’

The best way to build a great product is to really understand the problem it is trying to solve. The latest awesome example of this is Super Fun Kid Time, an app made for scheduling kids’ playdates that was created at the Disrupt Hackathon by nine-year-old programmer Alexandra Jordan.

[ via TechCrunch ]