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Experts: Women Missing Out on Fastest Growing Tech Jobs

women who code

It's one of American's greatest fears and one of the most common crimes, getting hacked. According to Gallup, one in four Americans have had their information stolen or their credit cards used. One industry that's working to stop that from happening is cyber security.

"Because the internet has made such a great change on how we operate and how we do business, it's created more of a need to how we do things securely," said Tulsa University Professor Tyler Moore.

Moore teaches cyber security classes at TU. He said there's one trend he's seen that he doesn't need a computer to calculate.

"We don't have enough women going into the profession," said Moore. Moore said 18 percent of undergrad computer science majors are women but even fewer than that study cyber security.

"I think we sort of unfortunately as a society we steer our boys and our girls to different disciplines from an early age," said Moore.

"Sometimes when they market computer science to men, they say computer science is really hard and you're really smart, so you should do computer science. When they market to women, they say computer science is really hard, but you can do it anyway," said Marie Vasek.

Vasek is getting her PHD in cyber security at Tulsa University. She said, even though she's still in school, she frequently gets calls from companies offering her a job in cyber security.

"I got into it because I love puzzles and my job is solving a bunch of puzzles that are really interesting to me," said Vasek.

According to a new study, in 2020 there will be more than 2 million cyber security jobs. In a video, experts at the (ISC)2 foundation said that right now it is difficult to find people with cyber expertise and the stress in the workforce is beginning to show as new threats target new technology daily.

"What we need to do to overcome this is to introduce girls with the middle school high school level to see what programming is like, to see that it can be fun, and see that something is for them," said Moore.

Vasek said it's not just women that the schools and families should target. "Computer science is overwhelmingly white, there's not a lot of underrepresented minorities. That's also another way, not just increases the amount of women, but increases the amount of diversity in other ways that are really important for the field."

Moore said Tulsa University actively recruits women to come into the program and holds camps during the summer for young children to learn about computer coding. There are even local groups, such as 'Girls Who Code in Sand Springs' out there trying to bring more women into the computer science field.

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