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Successful CIPS NL Women in IT Conference Recap

 

On Thursday, May 3rd, 2012 the annual CIPS NL Women in IT (WIT) Conference was held in Newfoundland & Labrador. For the first time, the event went beyond the single site in St. John’s, and a smaller satellite event was simultaneously held on the province’s west coast in Corner Brook.

As in previous years, the WIT conference was held at the campus of the College of the North Atlantic (CNA) in St. John’s on Prince Philip Drive. The Corner Brook event was held at the College’s west coast campus on O’Connell Drive. In total, over 350 girls spent the day learning about the exciting careers of women at the forefront of the province’s advanced technology sector.  Speakers interspersed talks about reasonable use of social media and the career adventures of a senior IT business analyst with hula hoop lessons and an art show. The province’s Chief Information Officer, Ms. Ellen MacDonald, delivered a keynote address live in St. John’s and simulcast to the audience in Corner Brook. In her address Ms. MacDonald talked of the wonderful opportunities a career in IT has given to her, and urged the girls to consider it too.

The annual WIT event in Newfoundland and Labrador is supported by local advanced technology firms, the provincial government’s Department of Innovation, Business and Rural Development (IBRD), the NL Association of Technology Industries (NATI), and College of the North Atlantic (CNA). The largest public college in Atlantic Canada, CNA boasts 17 campuses across the province and is committed to expanding the CIPS NL WIT event to other campuses in future years. The College and its staff provide coordination and complete logistical support to ensure the conference’s success.

In 2013 we hope to grow the CIPS NL WIT conference to other areas of Newfoundland and Labrador. This year’s event was proof that this approach to exposing young women to all the choices within the sector strikes a note with this age group, seen in the feedback forms that urged us to continue holding this conference, in order to “let other girls enjoy this experience like I did”, as one girl wrote.

CIPS NL would like to thank everyone who volunteered as speakers and organizers, because without them it would not be the success it is!

 

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