Queen’s Women in Computing (QWIC)
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Queen’s Women in Computing (QWIC)

I think it’s important to have women in
computing so that we can encourage new women and younger girls to join and get
interested in this ever-growing field.>>Women have to be involved in computing
and they are going to be involved in computing.>>Computer science is too
important to just be left to men. [music]>>QWIC is an initiative to bridge the gap
between female and male representation in the field of computer science. This
initiative was started by Wendy Powley.>>In 2003, I created the QWIC group,
the Queen’s women in computing. This group was formed for a support networking
group for the women in computing, but it was also formed for raising awareness
of the fact that there are very few women in the field of computing.>>QWIC is
taking an initiative to open up opportunities for people who are
underrepresented in the field of computer science and technology.>>I
thought it was a really great initiative to help women like me who had never
thought about pursuing computing.>>QWIC is really doing a great job in trying to get undergraduates so in first year and upper year as well, to explore all the different opportunities that are available to them in tech.>>In 2010, we formed a conference called the Ontario celebration of women in computing, ON-QWIC. The conference ran here in Kingston and attracted 150 women from across Ontario. In 2017, the conference was held in Montreal and it attracted nearly 600 women from across Canada. The conference is to bring women together to
network and support each other in the field and to encourage students to
continue with their studies in computer science.>>The School of Computing is leading the way for women in computing in Canada. More than 30% of our computing students are women and more than 50% of the students in our first year courses are female. We have many women leaders in our undergraduate student association, COMPSA.>>Beacuse they have such a high percentage of females in our department our student government, which has been extremely active in our
department, is primarily led by women.>>It’s important to have representation
for young girls because computing as a male-dominated field right now, and so seeing that if you’re young, you might
feel discouraged to go into computing even if it’s something that you’re
interested in.>>Having women in STEM is so, so important for the future of our country, of our world. It’s happening. And I’m very hopeful of the fact that it will happen in the future because women deserve to be a part of
this process. [music]

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