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  • Writer's pictureDonna Milgram

Free Python Certification for Female Students

I had a great experience attending and presenting at the Winter ICT Educator Conference held at Cisco headquarters this year … 

 … Not only did I have a great turnout for my workshop “How to Boost Female Enrollment in your Cybersecurity Program, Finally!”

… I also created some valuable partnerships. One of these partnerships is with OpenEDG which provides free curriculum to students as well as internationally recognized certifications in the Python programming language. Around 80,000 students take their courses each year and 30,000 sit for their exams.

I met the founder, Maciek Wichary of Poland (on my right in the photo) and the Director of Business Development, Roobed Trejo of Mexico (on my left), at the evening reception.  They told me their own data showed that only a small number of females participate in their courses - approximately 16% -  and they wanted to help move that needle.

Here’s what we came up with: 

Any school that participates in a WomenTech Training will be eligible for their female students to take OpenEDG’s Certified Entry-Level Python Programmer (PCEP) exam at no cost for 2-years after participation in the WomenTech Training. 

That’s a $59 value X as many women as you can enroll in 2-years time. If you enroll 226 like Broward did in one year (see the testimonial below my signature) that could be a value of $13,334 x 2 = $26,668. That’s a very generous offer.

They’ve surveyed students who have received this certification. The students report increased earnings, better job satisfaction, and more recognition in the field.

This “bonus” will apply both to our open WomenTech Trainings and those done on contract with a school or educational agency.

I’m only going to have one open training this year. I’ll announce it next week. Watch your email because we will only have spots for 4 teams. Last year 3 of those spots went within a week.

Would you like to talk with me about a contract training or writing us into your Perkins grant? I have a few spots in my schedule during the next couple of weeks. Just fill out this quick form and you’ll receive a link to my calendar. I look forward to talking soon.

"The Bootcamp got us thinking intentionally about who we were going to target for outreach. In a year’s time, we had increased female enrollment in our IT & CS Department from 149 to 226 female students and male enrollment had also increased from 751 to 1009 male students. Since then, it has grown organically and blossomed into something that our college just does naturally.

I think getting together as a team with intention—because we're all so busy—and developing a written plan that we could stick to was what made all the difference. It made us really think outside the box and get more creative about the ways we could reach different demographics and teach our courses. I don’t think we would have ever done that if it wasn't for the WomenTech Educators Training."

~ Michelle Levine, Interim District Director of Faculty Development, Broward College, Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI), FL brought a team to an online Bootcamp



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