Creating a community for Women in Tech

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Women in Tech club president Laura Dunkin (left) and vice-president Madeleine Menary (right) formed the club after recognizing the need for a space for women in the technology to come together.

Two Fanshawe College computer programmer analyst students have formed Fanshawe’s first Women in Tech club after recognizing a gap in the technology industry.

Both president Laura Dunkin and vice-president Madeleine Menary noted that there aren’t a lot of women in their program nor their field of work. Out of 300 computer programmer analyst students, about 12 are women. The two students also saw there was only one other women besides them in their separate co-op placements.

“We really wanted some sort of community for the women in tech. A lot of other universities and colleges have a similar kind of club,” Dunkin said. “Because Fanshawe didn’t have one, we saw it as a really good opportunity to possibly bring that here.”

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Menary added that studies found women take a more internal approach to solving problems at work than their male colleagues in the tech industry.

“It’s nice to just, kind of, break outside of that stereotype and have a network of women to support each other,” she said.

The Women in Tech club will host events such as a reading week social, a group outing to the TechAlliance headshot event, and a Git workshop. Menary said Git is a collaborative software allowing developers to work on their own piece of a project before stitching it together.

“That’s actually something that’s not taught at Fanshawe, but is used almost everywhere in the actual workforce,” Dunkin said. “We figured we’d put on a workshop.”

Both students took a chance by immersing themselves in the tech sector through Fanshawe. Dunkin’s brother and father are somewhat involved in the industry, but she didn’t code before her studies. Menary, looking for a career change, didn’t know anyone working in technology before coming to the College.

The two women enjoy the problem- solving aspect of technology.

“It’s kind of like building a puzzle, right?” Menary said. “You’re given a set of tools and then a problem and you build a solution with what you’re given or learning to use.”

The Women in Tech club also brings a group of people together to attend various tech-related events, so they feel less intimidated than they would if they went alone. Dunkin and Menary encourage anyone interested in technology, whether or not that is their field of study, to attend events held across London. Along with TechAlliance, tech-related events can be found on

“You can just go to a workshop, know nothing about it, and just see if it is an interest for you,” Dunkin said. “Because it’s really hard to explain things unless you go in and you just kind of start.”

Menary added Udemy and Khan Academy are user-friendly online platforms offering free computer programming lessons for those interested in trying code.

All students, whether or not they identify as women, interested in the Women in Tech club can send an email to and sign up for their newsletter.