Women 6.0 | Being a Tech Role Model | A Morgan Stanley & WeAreTheCity event | In Words

Women across the technology sector gathered to join, celebrate and learn about becoming a tech role model during the Women 6.0 event last week.
Mona Niknafs, Technical Associate, Morgan Stanley - Talking Tech role models
Mona Niknafs, Technical Associate, Morgan Stanley – Talking Tech role models

For the fourth consecutive year, Morgan Stanley and WeAreTheCity presented an innovative event, which heard from inspiring speakers such as Maggie Philbin and the next generation of tech; as well as showcasing not-for-profit organisations supporting the growth of women entering the technology industry.

Opening the night, Vanessa Vallely, founder of WeAreTheCity said, “It is humbling to see so many women who want to give back to technology.”

Continuing Managing Director at Morgan Stanley, Gerard Hester said, “It is extremely inspiring to see so many female technologists passionate about shaping the pipeline of women coming into technology. Whether you feel comfortable speaking at a school assembly, running an after-school club, sharing expertise via Skype or mentoring a fellow female technologist, we hope to offer something for all aspiring role models tonight.”

Tech journalist, former presenter of Tomorrow’s World and CEO of TeenTech, Maggie Philbin inspired the audience with her own journey into the tech industry.

She said, “I loved science at school and I thought that being a vet was my only option – and in many instances young girls still face this today.”

“It doesn’t matter what age you are, you are potentially a role model who can make a difference. Never underestimate the difference you can make as an individual.”

Further highlighting the need to promote and encourage more women to become tech role models, three young speakers spoke about their personal need to have a female influence when pursuing technology.

Ella Rosa, 12, spoke of the need to have a more in-depth technology curriculum and to ‘hear from adults who have fun tech careers’. She also did not want to be the only girl in a classroom of boys. Mohima Ahmed, Imperial College Student and AppsForGood graduate, encouraged attendees to say, ‘so what if I’m a girl’.

She continued, “This is the kind of generation we are so close to building. If you are interested in something, you can continue to be so.”

Mona Niknafs, Technical Associate at Morgan Stanley spoke of the need to promote women into the technology sector and encourage mentoring among them. She said, “In my experience, having a mentor has been extremely beneficial and I think others in my position will appreciate having one to help find their unique path in technology. As the network grows, there will be more members and therefore more mentors and so our cycle can continue.”

Over the course of the evening, attendees were given the opportunity to learn about each enterprise’s initiative and how they could get involved or inspire others to pursue a career in technology. Amongst the organisations were Stemettes, AppsForGood, #techMums and Code Club.

To view all the photos from the Women 6.0 event, click here.

 

Alison Simpson
About the author

Alison is the Digital Content Editor for WeAreTheCity. She has a BA Honours degree in Journalism and History from the University of Portsmouth. She has previously worked in the marketing sector and in a copywriting role. Alison’s other passions and hobbies include writing, blogging and travelling.

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