Progress spotty in narrowing tech field’s gender gap

Posted by | November 08, 2012 | | No Comments

Article published by IBJ.com – May 15, 2012.

Co-founding a company that makes software to improve B2B sales prospecting wasn’t exactly on Jenny Vance’s five-year plan after graduating from DePauw University in 2000 with a degree in economics.

“When I left school, I said I’ll do anything but inside sales and anything but tech companies. I wasn’t a computer science major,” Vance said.

Jenny Vance.jpg
Jenny Vance co-founded two tech companies–LeadJen and Jesubi, both in Indianapolis. She’s one of relatively few woman tech entrepreneurs locally. (IBJ Photo to the right by Perry Reichanadter)
Yet she is among relatively few women to start a technology firm in the region. Vance is president and co-founder of Indianapolis-based LeadJen, which employs about 60 people.

Most tech startups are birthed by men in their 20s and 30s who have a background in computer science.

To what degree women are underrepresented in the ranks of tech entrepreneurs is hard to quantify. It seems nobody local follows the issue in detail. But those who get around in entrepreneurial circles know, if only anecdotally, that it’s a small universe.

Another prospective entrepreneur in tech entered the industry outside of the computer sciences path. Lauren Weatherall, a marketing coordinator at Right On Interactive, graduated from DePauw University with a degree in communications and Spanish.

“It was a new space for me. I like stepping out of my comfort zone and constantly learning,” Weatherall said. “I’m enjoying becoming an expert in a space that two years ago I was unfamiliar with.”

 

This article is continued on IBJ.com.

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