Budapest, Hungary, 2016, April 28
Flagship university cooperation – record numbers at the Girls' Day at Ericsson Hungary
Ericsson Hungary has been participating at EU's initiative, the Girls' Day since its establishment, 2011. Year by year more and more teenager visited Ericsson's R&D Center in Budapest. Since the first event our aim was to show the beauty of programming to girls from an early age and encourage them to consider studies and careers in Information and Communication Technologies.
This year for the first time Ericsson Hungary launched a joint program with the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Informatics of the Budapest University of Technology and Informatics with the title:Woman informaticians are missing from Informatics. The idea behind this common event was to show the girls the whole career path and opportunity from the university studies till a job at a high-tech multinational company and beyond, highlighting our common research and development and laboratory programs. The idea proved to be really successful, since there was a record number of applicants who wanted to visit both a university and a multinational ICT company.
Our program started at the university where the vice-dean of the Faculty and Peter Orban section manager greeted the girls and hold a general presentation on the university and Ericsson. Later the students in different small groups could listen to presentations about the latest research program of the university and could see the interactive and exciting demonstrations from the Department of Telecommunications and Media Informatics, such as the speaking robot, that helps sick children and can enter places where not even parents/relatives are allowed (sterile rooms) and played droid soccer using their Android phone to control their player and lead their team to victory. The girls were also shown the lately inaugurated Swedish Student Corner at the Faculty (it was realized also with the support of Ericsson Hungary). Our aim was to present the latest results of research program at Ericsson-university collaboration, to show that screwdrivers or cables aren't a tool of an informatics in this time, and even more to highlight that on the base the knowledge, interest and experience there are many job possibilities for the informatics at a vibrant R&D community like the Ericsson one.
Second part of the program continued at the R&D Center of Ericsson Hungary with the following etaps:
1. How is life for a woman at Ericsson? Let's meet some woman engineers and learn how they can show up as an engineer or informatician.
2. Join the Agile Gemba Tour – and get an insight into the workadays. You will find out how and among what circumstances work the engineers and developers at Ericsson.
3. Bake your pizza in the Pizza Kanban play, where you will get to know what team work is all about, how important the communication is and also that the common learning and the continuous development is crucial in the everyday work of all programmers.
The program ended with a lunch where among 25 huge pizzas the girls assured us that this day was really full of informative content and it was very useful to see what the way is from the university to an industrial player, a multinational company.
Since the research laboratory visit was not part of the official program, but the girls were very enthusiastic the opportunity was offered to them. We were already behind the planned schedule so it was really surprising that more than half of all girls stayed for the lab tour and had an insight into world of technology.
(Ericsson Hungary puts strong emphasis on diversity and grabs all opportunity to attract more female employees to the R&D Center. We participate in women career days, regularly organize Skool projects, where teenage girls are taught the basics of programming, at all Ericsson organized programming competitions there are special awards for women, etc. One of the last programs was a coach and mentor program for young girls led by Ericsson Women Leaders' which is finished at the end of April. With the help of Ericsson women software developers a mobile app was submitted to the "TechnovationChallenge", the Global Technology Entrepreneurship Program. This Technovation challenges is created for girls all over the world to build a mobile app that will address a community problem every year. The program inspires girls to pursue careers in technology.)