The field of cyber security needs more women, and the Girl Scouts needs a new mission: A perfect match.
Only 11% of the world’s information security workforce are women. What a wonderful opportunity for the Girls Scouts of the USA. With 1.8 million young girls in kindergarten through sixth grade, the 105-year-old nonprofit has been losing members for more than a decade.
Designed for a different era, the Girl Scouts for too long relied on suburban stay-at-home moms to volunteer their time as troop leaders, and an orientation that was out of touch with today’s economy.
Now it’s making an aggressive push to recruit more volunteers and become more relevant by revamping its badge program to include 21st century skills like engineering, computer science, and financial literacy. That’s a smart move.
Beginning next year, the Girl Scouts will introduce the first of 18 badges for cyber security that teach the foundations of fighting identity theft and other computer crimes.
Last year there were one million cybersecurity job openings around the world. More than 209,000 of them in the U.S. were unfilled, and job postings were up 74 percent over the previous five years – according to a 2015 analysis by Peninsula Press, a project of the Stanford University Journalism Program.
The demand for talent in the booming cybersecurity market is expected to rise to 6 million jobs globally over the next two years. That creates an opening for women everywhere.
Check out these other resources to support girls and women in cyber security:
GenCyber Computer Science for Cyber Security (CS4CS) Summer Program for High School Women at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering.
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