Microsoft hires Barbie to attract girls to Computer Engineering

By on November 24, 2010, 2:19 PM
Microsoft is making sure Barbie is adds computer engineer to her long list of careers. As part of its DigiGirlz program, Microsoft joined forces with the Girl Scouts of Northern California and Mattel to encourage young girls to explore computer science careers.

More than 200 Girl Scouts, community leaders, government officials, and Microsoft employees came to Silicon Valley for the DigiGirlz Summit. A panel of women from the technology, government, and academic sectors spoke about best practices for encouraging girls and women to pursue tech-related careers; female Microsoft employees were on hand to help and talk about their experience. Lisa Brummel, senior vice president of Human Resources at Microsoft, announced an ongoing partnership with the Girl Scouts of Northern California to support its Girls Go Tech program.

At the same time, Mattel has started selling a Barbie Computer Engineer Doll for $13. She comes dressed in a funky tee with binary code design, includes a cell phone headset, laptop bag, pink laptop, and a special code to unlock career-themed content online.

Even though women represent more than 50 percent of the population on US college campuses, they earn only 18 percent of all computer science degrees and only 10 percent of engineering degrees. Microsoft's DigiGirlz program is thus an effort to address this disparity.





User Comments: 11

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Guest said:

I see this a great thing in so many ways, if it works, and if more women go in to Engineering field.

Wagan8r Wagan8r said:

When I graduated with my CS degree, there were 3-5 women out of about 25 grads. So, 18% sounds about right.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Interesting - what the heck, might as well give it a shot. But they may want to ship some of these overseas. My employer has 150 ICT people and out of the 30 or so women in the department the vast majority are Asian or Middle Eastern.

Burty117 Burty117, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

TomSEA said:

Interesting - what the heck, might as well give it a shot. But they may want to ship some of these overseas. My employer has 150 ICT people and out of the 30 or so women in the department the vast majority are Asian or Middle Eastern.

So are you saying Asian and Middle Eastern people like Barbie? :P

KG363 KG363 said:

"Microsoft is making sure Barbie is adds computer engineer to her long list of careers" huh?

Benny26 Benny26, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Yeah my 4 year old girl says she's interested, but my 28 year old wife's grown out of Barbie i'm afraid microsoft.......******.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

So are you saying Asian and Middle Eastern people like Barbie? :P
Yeah, Burka Barbie.....Exploding backpack sold separately.

Guest said:

And the backpack's expensive :P

I hope it fits under the burka.

maestromasada said:

currently study for my Bsc part time, 22 guys, not a single woman, welcome barbie! do your nails and save us.

Trillionsin Trillionsin said:

"Barbie is adds computer engineer"

yup

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

Just a quick question, how does one "hire" Barbie, by the hour?

OK Emil, the sentence structure here needs a bit of touching up. Permit me to be so bold as to suggest either, "will add", (future tense), or perhaps, "is adding", (present progressive), as viable alternative verb forms, to the completely obscure, "is adds". Oh what the hey, "adds" is the singular present tense, and it would even work by itself

Microsoft is making sure Barbie >> is adds << computer engineer to her long list of careers.

As part of its DigiGirlz program
"DigiGirlz" sounds like it should be pornographic desktop wallpaper.

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