by Niki Messmore and Kathryn Magura
According a 2015 report by the American Association of University Women (AAUW), the percentage of computing and engineering jobs held by women have been falling over the last 23 years – and an even greater disparity for women of color. “Stereotypes and bias” are the two leading causes of fewer women working in these fields. No matter how many strides women make in technology, there is always more work to do.
“Student Affairs Women Talk Tech” (SAWTT) was created in October 2015 by Kristen Abell and Brenda Bethman as a result of seeing few student affairs technology and social media blogs written by women. Here we are, five years later, and there’s been an increase of women-led blogs on technology! The field of student affairs is fortunate to have women-identifed leaders invest in the field as writers to share their research, perspectives, and best practices.
It is necessary to continue this momentum. “Student Affairs Women Talk Tech” is a blog dedicated to serving as a forum for women-identified persons in student affairs with an interest in technology. Writers work in a variety of fields that may not necessarily include directly focusing on technology, but they nonetheless have a passion for technology. We focus on showcasing the women who are doing things with technology in the field of student affairs, and talking about some of the unique issues that face women (and their intersecting identities) as we break into a formerly male-dominated area.
Interested in writing? We have a call-out for SAWTT bloggers for the 2015-2016 academic year! Whether you are interested in submitting one blog post or serving as a reoccurring writer, we invite you to register online by the deadline of Wednesday, October 28th.
Questions? Feel free to contact the SAWTT co-editors Kathryn Magura and Niki Messmore on Twitter via our handles @Kmagura and @NikiMessmore!
By Kathryn Magura
Hello everyone! As we move into the cold winter months, also known as conference season in Student Affairs, we wanted to take the opportunity to let you know about some upcoming changes to the blog. Over the next few weeks we will be introducing you to some new bloggers, and wishing some of our previous bloggers well as they move on to new opportunities.
As we move into the winter season, we also wanted to check in with our readers on what you’d like to see on the blog. Are they any segments or features you’d like to see? Are you interested in joining our blog team? Know someone we should ask to submit a guest post? Feel free to hit up the comments with your thoughts.
by Kristen Abell
As many of us start a new academic year at our institutions, we here at Student Affairs Women Talk tech are starting a new quarter of blogging. Believe it or not, we are getting ready to start our third year of blogging in September of this year. And with this new quarter and new year comes a new schedule. We like to keep things funky fresh here.
So for the next few months, you’ll be seeing some of your favorite bloggers write about whatever they choose, as well as our highlight posts (best practices, highlight an app, and highlight a woman in technology and student affairs) and the occasional Follow Friday post thrown in for good measure. We’ve also reached out to some of our favorite women in tech to see if they’d be interested in guest posting on here, so we hope to feature a few of them, as well. If you have an idea for a guest post, feel free to contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and let me know about it – we’d love to feature you on our blog!
We hope you’ll continue to enjoy reading about the world of student affairs and tech through our blog. Best of luck to all with the beginning of the school year, and we look forward to blogging for you!
by Kristen Abell
Well, for some of us, the summer season has already started, and for the rest of us, it’s probably not that far away. Summer tends to be a season of projects, of getting done all that we put off during the year, of rest and relaxation, of catching up. Despite the fact that the reason many of us love our jobs is because of the students, there is also a freedom that comes with having an empty campus, a chance to breathe a little. We’ll enjoy it for a little while, and then come August, we’ll be ready for the students to return, to bring the vibrancy back to our campuses that have been too quiet all summer.
Here at Student Affairs Women Talk Tech, we’re taking stock. We’ve made some changes to our schedule to freshen things up. Instead of posting Monday – Thursday, we’ll now be posting Tuesday – Friday. On Fridays, we’ll be adding a new type of post – the Follow Friday post. This will give our bloggers a chance to tell you who they follow and what they’re reading – and give you some new info to check out hopefully. Consider it your very own student affairs and tech content curation system. Feel free to send us suggestions to check out.
As of this post, we’ve published 458 posts, over slightly less than three years. We’re one of the most consistently updated (and least recognized) blogs in student affairs and technology. This summer, we’ll be bringing you even more and better content, including some collaborative posts by our bloggers, who have so much good info we can’t wait to share it.
We hope you’ll enjoy reading it as much as we enjoy writing it. Happy summer!
by Colleen Riggle
This is my final official post with this group. It’s been a fun three years of writing and I’m honored to have been a part of this blog from the start and seeing how it’s grown. This is my final post since I’m heading back to school for my doctorate and will have ample opportunities to writing over the course of the program. However, throughout the process of applying to graduate school I’ve been keenly aware of how technology has been guiding the process.
First, in taking the GRE it was quite the endevour. I had a very bad experience with the testing center the first time I was supposed to take the test and trying to find an actual person to speak with was quite challenging. It made me appreciate the times when I am able to talk with an actual person in customer support. And when I was actually able to take the exam, I’m pretty sure that was the most focus I’d been on a computer for that length of time – definitely different then just surfing Google mindlessly.
Second, applying to graduate school. It was was all computer based, not on paper. That probably makes me seem old, or just how fast technology has changed the way we do things and process information. However, my letters of recommendation had to be in hard copy form (odd) so buying stamps to send those request was quite fun. There were certain documents that went in one package to the school, and other documents that went to the specific department. I remember sitting in my adviser’s office and waiting for the “phone call” where we could call in my classes for the next term #smallschoolbonus. When registering this time, it was like fort knox logging in to the system and clicking through the various tables and forms.
However, I’m registered for classes starting May 20th! I’m actually going to live in a residence hall for one week while taking one class this summer.
But the bright side of technology is that I can purchase Kindle versions of my book – and be able to fit in schoolwork where ever I am on campus, in the car, or at home!
So with that, this is my final post! Thank you for allowing me to be a part of this writing, blogger community!
by Valerie Heruska
My name is Valerie Heruska and I am a computer, social media and technology geek. I’ve broken many computers and crashed hard drives, but like Humpty Dumpty, I put them back together again. This is the very reason that I am infatuated with spiffy new hardware. I love that the computer/iPad/gadgets have revolutionized everything we do, and are fortunate enough to have access to these wonderful technologies.
When I’m not breaking computers, I’m a Residence Hall Director at Boston University. I love my job and my students, and I couldn’t ask for a better way to spend my time at work – having great conversations with students. I also enjoy figuring how to connect with students in the virtual world, since most of them are connected via their mobile devices and/or computers.
I love writing, blogging, and tweeting. You can find me on Twitter @valerieheruska. My current adventure is graphic design, which I am thoroughly enjoying the learning process. When I was given the opportunity to blog about student affairs +women+ technology, I jumped at the opportunity. I would like to thank Kristen for the opportunity and I would like to thank Gateway for making a computer that was easy to break and put back together.
by Kristen Abell
Well, we here at SA Women Talk Tech are starting a new blogging schedule, and as usual, that means there are changes afoot. We schedule out for three months at a time, which gives us a chance to evaluate what’s working, what’s not, recruit new bloggers, and give our seasoned bloggers a rest. And this time, we’re even giving one of our editors a well-deserved rest. Brenda Bethman has stepped down from editing to focus on other projects at work, but she will still be blogging with us (yay!). Lucky for us, we have recruited some amazing bloggers over the years, and one of them has stepped up to fill Brenda’s spot – Kathryn Magura will be one of the co-editors for our blog starting with this round. We are way excited to have her helping out in the editor role – woohoo!
And though we’ve also had a couple of bloggers step down for a bit this go-round, we’ve been able to recruit a fresh face – Valerie Heruska. One of the things we love doing at SA Women Talk Tech is recruiting new writers to give our blog a well-rounded perspective. Later today we’ll be posting an introduction post from Valerie so you can get to know her better. Welcome aboard!
Although there are a few other changes afoot behind the scenes, we hope that you’ll continue to enjoy and share what we’re posting. If you ever have suggestions or comments, feel free to let us know! Welcome to our new schedule at Student Affairs Women Talk Tech!