WOMEN

Kathryn Parsons, Decoded Founder, On The 'Dangerous Illusion' That Keeps Women Out Of Tech

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 22:  Kathryn Parsons, winner of the New Generation award, attends the Veuve Clicquot Business Woman A
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 22: Kathryn Parsons, winner of the New Generation award, attends the Veuve Clicquot Business Woman Award 2013 at Claridge's Hotel on April 22, 2013 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Getty Images for Veuve Clicquot)

Kathryn Parsons knows from firsthand experience just how tough it is to break into the tech world -- and the specific barriers that women face in doing so.

The cofounder of London startup Decoded, and the creator of the Code in a Day computer programming courses, understands just how important it is for women to have equal access to the tech world as men. The goal of Decoded's Code in a Day program is simple: "We want to spread digital enlightenment and skills to under-invested in groups ... : women, teachers, children, developing countries," Parsons told Refinery29.

Parsons also expressed just how much of a difference seeing women in the tech industry featured in the media makes:

The importance and impact of [Facebook CEO] Sheryl Sandberg and [Yahoo CEO] Marissa Mayer’s stories, visibility, and success can’t be underestimated. Technology is not just for boys. Coding is about thinking logically, problem-solving, collaborating, innovating. In what world are these not female skills? Yet I often hear from women “My brain does not work that way” or “I am useless at technology.” Is there any other industry or role where you would hear the same? It’s like saying women don’t have the brainpower to vote! It is a dangerous illusion. Don’t just opt in to technology; own it.

Ladies, take note.

Click over to Refinery29 to read the full interview with Parsons.

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