IBM eyes future IT workers

In a move to reach groups that are under represented in the IT workforce, IBM has launched a program in Melbourne that will send 30 teenage girls in the state on a three-day computer camp.

The program, Exploring Interests in Technology and Engineering, (Exite) is targeted towards what IBM says is one "very powerful, yet under-represented group: women" and in particular, teenage girls.

As part of an international initiative, and designed to generate interest in IT, the program will provide 30 Victorian teenage girls from years eight to nine with a better appreciation of the outstanding career opportunities available in the technology fields.

During the program, which is held during school holidays, the girls - nominated by teachers -- learn about technology and science from leading IBM technologists through fun, hands-on activities including Web page development, content development, animation and communication collaboration workshops. According to IBM, at the conclusion of the workshop the girls will receive support in an initiative called IBM MentorPlace where they can use e-mail and the Web to stay in touch with IBM women researchers, developers, programmers and scientists they meet at the camps.

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