BY KAYTE MALIK
Are you inspired by the possibly of creating something that may one day change the world? A strong knowledge of technology, computers, and innovation will allow you to do that — and the Wild West right now is fashion technology,
A simple Indeed.com search of “Fashion Technology” jobs yields over 13K results among companies like Amazon, PopSugar and Rent the Runway. These tech companies are in search of people with the background and skillset to create the next FitBit or a dress that responds to social media.
There's the problem however, with the fashion tech industry.
When it comes employment, women, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, comprise 54.3% of the apparel industry; yet within the field of computer system design, they only account for 26.1%. That's only one example of a gender gap. Taken as a whole, the fashion industry is predominantly driven by women; and the technology industry, by men.
The tech industry could use more women!
Many believe this disparity is due to lack of exposure from a young age. Boys encouraged to play with robots, and video games and building-blocks while girls are given dolls and fake kitchens. The divide becomes so engrained in our children, that by the time girls get to high school many opt-out from technology opportunities.
A recent Google survey found that 50% of high school girls believe a career in technology is “bad” and that computers are "for boys," “boring,” and “nerdy.”
At its peak in 1999, women represented 36% of all computer science college graduates, now down to 20% today. We're headed the in the wrong direction.
The good news is that recent years have witnessed a huge push to expose girls to the Science, Technology, Engineering, Math (STEM) fields and computer science in hopes to improve these statistics and empower more females to enter a male-dominated industry.
A New Solution: Merging Fashion and Technology
We started Dresscode with the plan to expose more women and girls to computer science and coding through fashion. Our team thought, ‘why not bridge the gap with something most girls and women are already passionate about... fashion!’
At Dresscode, we aim to use fashion as a medium that equips young girls and women with the skills they need to be successful in both school and their future career endeavors.
Dresscode has developed a unique product ecosystem that merges fashion and technology to educate women and girls about computer science: sophisticated accessories engraved with a string of code from various programming languages.
Users can enter their bracelet’s characters into the Dresscode website to unlock various lessons on how to code!
There are so many opportunities to change the world with FashionTech; innovation is happening everyday. Our mission is to empower and inspire women about computer technology and its potential for innovation. To learn more about our efforts or start unlocking our lessons by visiting DressCodeTech.com!
Kayte Malik lives in Chicago and is the CEO of Dresscode, a FashionTech brand that aims to bridge the gender gap in technology through fashion.