By Kristen Abell
In his review of the #EDUCAUSE10 session, “The Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement of Women in Higher Education IT,” Eric Stoller notes that there were few men attending, especially of the CIO level. Much like him, I find this not only disappointing, but downright disturbing. I feel like we’ve been screaming from the rooftops that we need to make more of an effort to support and promote women in IT fields. And Stoller’s right, it can’t just be the women who are doing this. In a field that continues to be so heavily dominated by men, they need to do some of the work in promoting and supporting women. You’ll never hear me admit this otherwise, but there’s only so much women can do to promote and support other women – we need help.
So thanks for your call to action, Eric – let’s hope there’s some men out there who hear it.
By Kristen Abell
So, who is Kristendom? Kristendom is the online alter ego for me – Kristen Abell. I started blogging for myself around four years ago on my blog Kristendom. At that time, I had grand visions of blogger stardom and wasn’t really sure about how much I wanted people to know about my “real” identity. As time went on, my online identity and my real identity merged in cyberspace, as they most often inevitably do, but I enjoyed the “Kristendom” title so much, I decided to keep it.
I’ve always been a bit of a computer geek. I like to think that I know more about computers and technology than your average person, but I’m still definitely not as savvy as I’d like to be. I find that the more I learn about technology, the more I realize I have to learn. But hey, at least I’m willing to make the effort – even if the time is hard to come by. So I’m still learning to speak geek, although I’d say I’ve passed Geek Speak 101.
I’ve been in student affairs for over ten years now (yikes! Time flies when you’re having fun, I guess), serving in a variety of roles – mostly housing with some women’s center work thrown in for good measure. I currently serve as the Associate Director for Residential Life at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. The beauty of working at a slightly smaller school I’ve found is that I get to wear a number of hats. Tech guru extraordinaire for our Student Affairs and Enrollment Management Division is one of the hats I get to wear, and it’s allowed me a little license to explore some of my tech interests on work time. I have a very basic understanding of HTML and web design, a better-than-average knowledge of social networking, and a smattering of other skills/interests in various technologies.
Because of my interest in all things geek, I was lucky enough to get recruited to manage the website for Region IV-West of NASPA, as well as serve as the representative for the Technology Knowledge Community. Earlier this year, the same person that recruited me for NASPA mentioned that I should consider doing a blog on technology, and that was the beginning of Kristendom Talks Tech.
One of the things I love love love about the internets (by the way, this is how I frequently refer to the internet, mostly by way of mocking a certain former president when he spoke of it in the debates) is the creation of the blogosphere. I have long had aspirations of being a writer, and I believe that I’ve found my voice and preferred medium through blogging. I might never stop now! I’m extremely excited about this opportunity to work with some other women who have similar interests in technology and student affairs, and I hope that we can all share a little of our wisdom and promote women in technology at the same time.
By Brenda Bethman
For you Apple fangirls (and boys), here are some sources for live coverage of Apple’s “Back to the Mac” event, scheduled for today (10 a.m. PDT; 1 p.m. EDT):
I’m sure there are plenty of other sources. Pick your favorite, watch, and then come back here to tell us what you think.
By Kristen Abell
How it all began… Back in August of this year, Ed Cabellon posted on the Student Affairs Collaborative with information for graduate students, listing a number of technology and social media blogs…not one of which was a blog by women. Shortly after this, Brenda was nice enough to send Ed Kristen’s tech and student affairs blog, which he quickly added to his list, but when we all started looking around for other similar women-authored blogs, we noticed a definite lack. This required a happy hour meeting-of-the-minds for Brenda and Kristen, and so the Student Affairs Women Talk Tech collaborative blog experiment was born.
The Bloggers After a general call out through the #sachat community on Twitter, through Kristen’s tech blog, and through Facebook, we were able to gather a few women interested enough in writing about technology and student affairs to start our little experiment. Since technology is a secondary (or completely unrelated for some) part of our job descriptions, it’s taken a little while, but we’re finally here. Over the next couple of weeks, each of us will be posting an introduction to give you some more information about who we are and why we’re interested in technology and its relationship to higher education. Suffice it to say, we’re a pretty fantastic group of women who would love nothing more than to share our expertise (or geekiness) with the world.
The Blog So we’re off to a running start. We’ve got a few ideas for some regular features – a little link love, some best practices, book reviews, etc. – along with whatever strikes our fancy in the tech or student affairs world on a particular day. We’d love ideas, suggested links or books, and even more bloggers (if you’re interested, drop us a line as firstname.lastname@example.org). We hope you’ll help us make our experiment a success…and show everyone that we really are ready for women in technology.
Welcome to the Student Affairs Women Talk Tech blog! We are still in the process of getting things set up, so check back soon for updates.