Frequently Asked Questions
Why should tech companies focus on more Black women and girls in computing?
Over 500,000 computing jobs go unfilled each year in this country. However, less than 1% of all CS graduates are Black women each year. By 2026, the African-American workforce is expected to grow to slightly more than 21% of the U.S. workforce, with African-American women comprising a large share. In addition, research shows that a lack of diversity in an organization results in a lack of productivity.
Why are there so few Black women and girls in computing+tech fields?
CS has traditionally been reserved for White and Asian men. Many students of color, specifically Black women, lack role models who look like them or people encouraging them to pursue these courses and career paths. In many K-12 schools, CS courses are still unavailable.
What are some of the barriers to Black women and girls in computing+tech fields?
Most challenges that Black women and girls face are unrelated to CS fundamentals, such as bias, marginalization, microaggressions, and self-efficacy. Given the frequent lack of ethnically-relevant role models and encouragement to pursue CS, many women and girls lose or never have interest in the field.
Why did you write Unapologetically Dope?
While many Black women and girls are academically qualified to pursue computing degrees and fields, there are often challenges they face that aren’t taught in the classroom. These lessons are usually learned the hard way and discussed in private conversations, if one is lucky to have someone to share this info with them. This book was written to help all women and girls prepare for and confront these challenges.
Does a woman or girl have to be interested in or pursuing computing+tech degrees/careers to read Unapologetically Dope?
Absolutely not! While the title references the tech field, there is no mention of anything technical in the book, other than mentioning people or classes as part of my personal story. This is a book that any Black woman or girl can find value in, as these are common challenges (and lessons) they all face in becoming who they are both personally and professionally.
What should a reader get from Unapologetically Dope?
You will face challenges, large and small. Some may be related to the field, many will not. No matter what challenge you face, understanding that you are exactly where you’re supposed to be because you deserve to be there, nurturing your mind, body, and spirit with a tribe of supporting women, and trusting your process, timing, and skills will help you successfully overcome it.