WITSWORDS February 2016
February 2016

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WITS Update

Welcome to WITSWORDS February 2016. 

WITS update
We have had a busy month since the last newsletter. WITS was invited to Women in Science Spring Reception at Aras an Uachtarian by our Patron President Michael D Higgins and Sabina Higgins. We had two excellent meetings and we welcome a new corporate member Accenture as well as renewingnew and student members. There was an Executive meeting on 9 February and the next Executive meeting is on 2 March.

Women in Science Spring Reception Aras an Uachtarain 31 January 2016 
We were delighted to be invited to the Women in Science Reception and WITS presented President Higgins with a hard back copy of Lab Coats and Lace. There were lots of WITS members as well as Mary Mulvihill's sisters Anne and Noirin. The President made an inspiring speech making special mention of WITS and Mary Mulvihill
'who contributed so much to the creation of a positive environment in Ireland for women in science; not least through the establishment of the supportive network that is Women In Technology and Science (WITS) of which I am very proud to be patron'.  

WITS policy subcommittee update
The WITS Election Manifesto was developed by the WITS Policy sub-committee and launched before the election. It built on the NWCI Feminist Manifesto and was noticed by the NWCI and Ann O'Dea of Silicon Republic. Do read, it sets out our stall in terms of policy and is the start of work for the policy sub-committee. Thanks to Maria Delaney for leading this work.

WITS2016 Event #1 Policing in a Digital Age 9 February Charles Institute UCD
Sadhbh McCarthy gave a stimulating and challenging talk to WITS members and friends on policing approaches in our digital age. It prompted a great debate from all there. Thank you Sadhbh and thanks to Lara Cutlar of the WITS Executive for hosting the meeting in the Charles Institute at UCD.

WITS2016  Event #2  Unconscious Bias Workshop 17 February Jury's Custom House Inn D1.
There was a great response to Mary Carroll's excellent workshop on unconscious bias. Thanks to everyone who came along. It was most engaging and again prompted great discussion and networking. Thank you Mary for both organising the event and presenting the seminar.

New Corporate member Accenture welcome
We are delighted to welcome Accenture as a WITS Corporate member and working with our new member to support diversity and inclusion. We look forward to the Accenture International Women's Day event on 8 March at the Convention Centre Dublin. WITS will be attending and exhibiting in the Technology Showcase.

Student reps sought for WITS
Are you a student member of WITS? Would you be interested in acting as a student rep? We're looking for a student rep for the colleges and universities. Student reps will liaise with the WITS Executive and help us organise local meetings for our student members. Please email WITS if you are interested.


Dates for your diary - WITS events March  2016

WITS2016 Student Event TCD 10 March 2016
Students, come along to our first  WITS student based event of the year! Learn about the work of WITS (plus free pizza) at Fitzgerald Library (Physics Building) in Trinity College Dublin 6 pm BOOK HERE.


WITS at the Aras an Uachtarain Women in Science reception 31 January 2016.


 L'Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Fellowship Programme
Please encourage female postdoctoral level researchers  in the fields of life, physical and computer sciences, engineering and mathematics to apply. Applications here by 11th March 2016.

Startups 101 for Students  Wednesday March 2nd (5-7PM), Dogpatch Labs, D1
Come along to this FREE event for students to find out more about start ups. Book here. It is organised by Kim Pham of Frontline Ventures in partnership with Dublin Startup Commissioner's Office.

Women in ICT
Do you know any women who wish to return to work or to retrain to work in ICT? 
ICT Ireland Skillnet have a number of courses on offer in this area that are FREE to women.
For more information email or click here. 

NDRC Female Founders
Want to take part in the NDRC Female Founders Accelerator Programme a partnership between the NDRC and Enterprise Ireland's Competitive Start Fund? Applications open on 1 March, for more information click here. The NDRC is hosting an Open House on Thursday, 10th March to promote the programme, register here. Thanks to Helen Fullen of the NDRC and WITS member for this information.

Mentoring in Technology MinT
Working in tech and would like some mentoring or to be a mentor? MinT is a network that creates mentoring relationships between women in tech. To find out more click here. WITS is one of the supporters of the network.

F# mentoring programme
Anyone using or learning F# and would like some mentoring to become better programmers? Sign up for the F# mentoring by the FSSF here. More information about F# here.

European Innovation Council
WITS has been asked to circulate the call for ideas for a European Innovation Council to support Europe's innovators. Click here to contribute by 29 April 2016.

FACE Entrepreneurship Update - Dublin event 4 February 2016
The EU project FACE Entrepreneurship had a great event in Dublin on 4 February. Read about it here and have a look a the video. If you are thinking about entrepreneurship do join the network.

Tech Week 2016
Tech Week runs from 24-30 April this year. How can you contribute? Who is it for? It is run by the Irish Computer Society and aims to
address some of the key issues in ICT e.g. the requirement for 45,000 ICT professionals by 2018, the 27% drop out rate among first-year computing students and the fact that less than 20% of computing students are female.

Women in STEM in Australia
Congratulations to our Australian colleagues for their excellent website. Well worth a read.

Hypatia is a three year EU project from August 2015 that will engage 13-18 year old girls both in and out the school environment in STEM. Keep an eye on the website. 

Gender news

Passive language
Thanks to Lisa Cavern WITS member for this link to an article on passive language and a Chrome extension you can use to explore if you use passive language. This was one of the issues  raised at the Unconscious Bias workshop.  
Wiley Publishers and International Women's Day 2016.
Celebrate International Women's Day with the Gender Equality blog from Wiley. There are a range of topics including women in STEM. Wiley also have a webinar on women's right on 10 March 2016, more information here.

Award ceremony of the EU Prize for Women Innovators 2016 10 March 2016
The award ceremony for the EU Prize for Women Innovators takes place on March 10.
Sarah Bourke WITS member is one of the nine finalists. Follow the award on Twitter via hashtag #EUWIN2016.  More information via Best wishes to Sarah.

Inspirefest2016 update
Early Bird tickets on sale now.  #inspirefest2016.

Mary Carroll WITS Vice-Chair and presenter Unconscious Bias workshop 17 February with Julie Hogan WITS Secretary.

Membership 2016

Thank you for renewing your WITS membership for 2016. Your membership fee supports WITS activities and our free student affiliate membership. Thank you for your support. 

Renew your WITS membership today to continue to receive the newsletter and information about WITS activities and events. Membership fees for 2016 are the same as for 2015.

Members' News

Coding workshops
Vicky Lee Twomey WITS member has some very interesting workshops coming up:
Limerick Coding Grace R Workshop
Women Who Code Dublin Data Science Hack Night
She has two big Coding Grace events for International women's day:
Diversity in Games - Talks and Showcase
Data mini-Conference 
Echoing STEM
Vanessa Greene WITS member runs her own YouTube weekly show Echoing STEM connecting music and STEM subjects. Do have a look.

Thanks to WITS member Sheila Porter for the latest Scifest newsletter.  Great to read all about this festival of science for schools.

We welcome news and profiles from members. If you have events, initiatives or just something you think of interest to WITS members please email WITS and we'll include it in the next newsletter.
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